Worksite Accident Turns Fatal as Demolition Goes Wrong

In a horrible tragedy that serves as a reminder of the dangers that worksite accidents pose to bystanders as well as employees on the worksite, a worker whose leg was severed during the demolition of a building in Miami Beach died from his injuries in the hospital more than a week after the demolition gone wrong.  According to a report from Local 10 news, the worker died as a direct result of the injuries he sustained in the demolition accident.  Eyewitnesses told police and the media that a piece of flying debris hit the 46-year-old worker, who was thrown across Collins Avenue as a result.  A boulder-sized piece of debris then fell directly onto his leg, instantly severing the limb.  The injured worker, whose breathing and heart originally stopped after the boulder crushed his leg, received CPR from a police officer and parking enforcement official at the scene of the accident until he was able to be revived and then rushed to Ryder Trauma Center via emergency transport.  Police ended up shutting down Collins Avenue for a radius of several blocks around the demolition site given the smoke, dust, and debris that was kicked up when the building unexpectedly came down all at once.  In addition to the injured worker, several Miami Beach police and Fire Rescue personnel had to be admitted to a local hospital for treatment for breathing difficulties in the heavy smoke and dust caused by the demolition accident.

Additional details regarding the demolition also have come to light through further investigation by both Miami Beach Police and the media.  It turns out the building’s owner, a local developer that planned to build an oceanfront tower on the spot, had a permit to demolish the building, but not an implosion permit which he had originally sought.  This would have allowed the developer to bring the building down in a single instance, but the request was denied.  Instead, the demolition was supposed to occur gradually, but some sort of accident occurred in the process, triggering the entire building’s collapse.

Worksite Injuries to Third Parties

Although in this case it was an employee of the company performing the demolition who was injured and then subsequently died from his injuries, worksite accidents involving third parties are extremely common.  One only need think of what could have occurred in this scenario; a passer-by innocently walking down the street could have been hit by flying debris from the demolition and suffered serious injuries as a result.  Construction zones, demolition sites, and other worksites can be particularly dangerous for not only those who work in such environments but also for nearby third parties.  This is particularly true when the contractor or the company performing the work is not following proper safety precautions as appears to have happened in this case.  If a non-employee is injured on a worksite or as a result of a worksite accident, this would be treated differently than a worksite injury to an employee, which is handled through the worker’s compensation system.

Third parties injured as a result of the negligence of the owner or operator of a worksite have a personal injury claim against the owner and/or operator of the worksite, depending on the circumstances.  This would entitle the individual to recover any financial losses incurred as a result of the worksite incident, including any lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering the victim’s injuries caused him or her.  Therefore, if a third party had been injured in this incident, he or she would have been permitted to file suit to recover all such damages as a result of his or her injuries.

Contact the Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys of Schwed, Adams & McGinley 

Worksite accidents, like the death of an employee in Miami Beach due to the recent demolition accident on Collins Avenue, are regrettably not uncommon, and can occur suddenly and without warning.  These incidents can cause death or devastating injuries to innocent third parties unfortunate enough to be in the vicinity as a result of the owner or operator of the worksite’s negligence or ignoring basic safety protocols.  At Schwed Adams & McGinley, P.A., our experienced personal injury attorneys have more than 150 years of combined legal experience representing those who have suffered catastrophic injuries or have been the victim of a wrongful death in a worksite accident like the recent Miami Beach demolition accident. If you have been injured in a worksite accident, contact our experienced personal injury attorneys at contact@schwedlawfirm.com or (877) 694-6079 today.

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