The Occupational Health and Safety Administration is one of several regulatory agencies that strive to keep workers safe. Even so, accidents can happen especially in certain industries such as construction. When OSHA finds a violation, they can levy a fine against a company, but that does not always stop the unsafe workplace practices.
In Chicago last year a workplace accident in a factory resulted in the death of a factory worker. Under normal circumstances, the worker’s family would be eligible for workers’ compensation death benefits. In this particular case however, the family of the worker is suing for negligence.
The company where the accident occurred is Raani Corp located in Bedford Park. According to the company website, the company develops, manufactures and packages health and beauty products. The worker who was injured on the job had been working for Raani for about a year through a temporary staffing company.
The accident happened when a tank the worker was cleaning exploded. The contents, citric acid, burned 80 percent of his body. Despite being burned by the acid, the company managers did not call 911 for help. Instead, a co-worker was asked to take him to a health clinic, at which they arrived about 30 minutes after the worker suffered the acid burns. The man died three weeks later.
Common sense might inform someone that a health clinic is not equipped to handle burns of that magnitude and severity. Apparently OSHA agreed and fined Raani $400,000 after an investigation into the worker’s death.
The family is charging negligence. A wrongful death decision may take into account the pain and suffering the man no doubt endured as a result of his burn injuries. Burns are generally regarded as highly painful injuries.
Source: Chicago Tribune, “Family of worker killed at factory sue for negligence,” Naomi Nix, Sept. 19, 2012
At our Cook County law firm we represent workers who have suffered injuries in an on-the-job workplace accident. We offer assistance with workers’ compensation benefits and also wrongful death litigation.
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Chicago workplace accident results in death, family sues