A construction worker in Rye was seriously injured when a Caterpillar loader rolled forward and pinned him against a concrete wall.
The 29-year-old worker from Hartsdale, whose name was not released, briefly left the loader to investigate the construction area at 1 Read Court, a multimillion dollar home, just off the Boston Post Road. Another worker rushed to the operator’s aid by backing up the loader, but the worker was unable to prevent the operator from tumbling over a concrete wall and plunging nine feet down an elevator shaft. The operator had to be extricated from the bottom of the shaft before he was rushed to a nearby hospital with multiple contusions and lacerations, along with two broken legs.
Jablko Construction and Woodhail Rye Development LLC are managing construction and renovation of the seven bedroom and seven bathroom home.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
For about the last hundred years, workers’ compensation laws have meant no-fault insurance that pays cash to compensate for economic losses, mostly medical bills and lost wages.
The insurance company will pay all prior, current, and future medical expenses that are deemed medically necessary. Somewhat predictably, insurance companies often challenge expenses as unnecessary, which underscores the need for an experienced lawyer who knows the system. These medical bills include:
- Emergency care,
- Surgery and recovery,
- Physical and occupational rehabilitation,
- Medical devices, and
- Prescription drugs.
In most cases, the providers bill the insurance company directly, and the injured workers are not liable for any excess.
Lost wages are determined by multiplying two-thirds of the worker’s average weekly wage by the percentage of disability. In most cases, both these numbers are highly subjective. For example, in terms of wages, the insurance company often tries to compare truck drivers in Ithaca with truck drivers in Manhattan, and such a comparison is not exactly apples to apples.
Suing Outside Workers’ Compensation
In some cases, injured workers may be entitled to noneconomic damages as well, for things like their pain and suffering, loss of consortium (companionship), and loss of enjoyment in life. Many workplace accidents involve a defective product, like a loader that does not stay in gear, or a negligent co-worker. Moreover, the employer sometimes exhibits gross negligence that is the equivalent of intentional harm; for example, workers may be ordered into a construction ditch which the boss knows is about to collapse.
Injured workers may be entitled to significant benefits. For a free consultation with attorneys who stand up for injured workers, contact our office. Home and hospital visits are available.