Illinois residents who work in factories are at great risk for injury. Factory work, construction, commercial fishing and many other types of jobs are prone to workplace accidents that result in serious, often life-threatening injuries. Any number of issues may increase a safety risk, including lack of proper training or equipment.
An employer is obligated to inform every employee of all known risks associated with a particular position. If there is equipment available to help a worker carry out his or her duties in a safer manner, then the employer is also obligated to provide the equipment. Even when employers fulfill their obligations, workplace accidents can still occur.
On a recent Sunday afternoon, a 45-year-old worker was operating a forklift at the food and beverage plant where he was employed. Commercial vehicles, such as forklifts, backhoes and skid steers require special training to operate. No information was provided regarding this particular worker and whether he had received training before running the forklift.
Somehow, the massive machine went off the dock, taking the operator right along with it. He was knocked unconscious from the sudden impact of the crash. Sadly, when emergency workers arrived at the scene, the worker was pronounced dead.
Workplace accidents in Illinois and elsewhere often leave many questions unanswered until investigators have had time to do their job. The immediate family member of a deceased worker may be able to collect benefits that can help offset funeral costs and replace lost wages. Such benefits can surely never replace the loss of a human life; however, financial assistance is often a much needed source of support following a fatal workplace incident.