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Workplace fatality could lead to workers' compensation claim

The vast majority of employers go to great lengths to protect the health and safety of their employees. Employers ensure there is proper safety gear available and keep heavy machinery in good working condition, among other precautions. Despite these efforts, fatal workplace accidents still occur, often leaving family members wondering how they will cope with the financial complications of their loss. Many are entitled to workers' compensation benefits as a result of such an accident. One family in California may need these benefits to cope with the unexpected loss of their loved one.

The victim was a 52-year-old man had reportedly worked for Zero Waste Division for 25 years at the time of the accident. Reports indicate that the sanitation worker became pinned between a utility pole and a garbage truck. Although he was transferred to the hospital, he died later on as result of the injuries he suffered in the accident.

A spokesperson for the city that employed the man claims that workers are in shock over the man's death and are working to support his family, including his two sons. The California Division of the Occupation Safety and Health Administration is working to determine the exact cause of the accident. If violations of health and safety standards are discovered, Cal/OSHA could issue a citation and fine against the man's employer.

After a fatal workplace accident, it is important to discover the exact cause of the incident in order to prevent future injuries. While the results of the investigation may provide grieving family members some degree of closure, it will likely do little to help with the financial struggle created by loss of income and funeral expenses. Fortunately, workers' compensation insurance benefits typically extend to certain family members in the event of a fatality. An experienced professional can help grieving family members seek the compensation to which they are entitled.

Source: kron4.com, "Berkeley sanitation worker dies in on-the-job accident", Jan. 12, 2016

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