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Workers' compensation: 40-foot fall kills California ironworker

In what must have been a traumatic experience, teachers, school staff and co-workers recently an ironworker fall 40 feet to his death. The incident occurred on a construction site at a high school in San Diego. The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health has launched an investigation. Falls form a significant percentage of the death benefits claims that are filed in California each year.

According to an incident report, the 30-year-old ironworker from Bakersfield was working on a beam that was attached to a platform, 30 feet above ground level. At approximately 2 p.m., one of the beams that the worker was connecting fell, and he was knocked down. He was rushed to a hospital but succumbed to the injuries he suffered.

Reports indicate that this incident occurred mere hours after a ceremony to celebrate the placement of the highest beam, which was signed by contractors, staff and students. It is unclear whether the ironworker was wearing a fall arrest harness, and that will be one of the issues the Cal/OSHA inspectors will investigate. Reportedly, a second worker was injured, but his injuries were not life-threatening.

When a life is lost on a construction site in California, the victim's surviving family members may be eligible for death benefits through the California workers' compensation insurance program. The benefits claims process is complicated and comes at a challenging time. An experienced workers' compensation attorney can help pursue recovery of all applicable benefits to cover end-of-life expenses and a financial package to make up for lost wages.

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