A story appearing in the Sun-Sentinel on Friday October 8, 2010 discusses an elaborate emergency rescue of men trapped inside of a Hollywood Florida water tower. Apparently, the workers, natives of Tonga, a nation in the South Pacific were performing routine maintenance on the water tower when their scaffolding collapsed. The cause of the collapse is under investigation and is unfortunately one of many common scaffolding failure injuries that occur to laborers employed in South Florida. The workers fell approximately 45 feet inside the towers bowl. One of the victims was able to call for emergency assistance with his cell phone the other worker was unconscious.
While there was no immediate information concerning which the companies were that the men were working for, there is a significant concern for the safety of laborers working ff of scaffolding and an investigation should be under way to determine why such a known ultra hazardous service would not have been provided the appropriate scaffolding. Needless to say, when scaffolding collapses there is likely to be serious injury or death.
While it is way too soon to determine whose fault the incident may be, incidents such as these could possibly fall under Florida Workers’ Compensation laws, which unfortunately greatly restrict the amount of compensation that these ill-fated victims may be entitled to. In Florida most employers as well as general contractors generally enjoy a Workers’ Compensation immunity that greatly restricts the injured workers right to seek appropriate and full damages even if the employer was completely, carelessly negligent for having caused the accident – regardless of the severity. While there are exceptions to Florida’s extremely restrictive Workers’ Compensation immunity, workers should know that there are some rare occasions for acts almost the equivalent to the point of intentionally causing server injury or killing the employee; and may seek damages beyond the Workers’ Compensation benefits of Chapter 440.
For further discussion of this topic, please contact the Fort Lauderdale Injury Lawyer at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 1 (877) 529-0444