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Illinois Attorneys Discuss The High Rate of Construction Worker Deaths Within Small Companies

Illinois workers' compensationLarge companies are few and far between in the construction industry. According to a quarterly report released by the Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR), who collect data based on the fatality rates among construction companies, around 82 of these types of businesses in 2016 were composed of fewer than 10 employees.

Unlike larger establishments, smaller construction companies may be more likely to lack adequate oversight, ignore certain safety procedures, and cut corners to save time and money.

The fatality rate among small companies

From 2011 - 2016, the fatality rate within companies with no more than 10 employees was 47 percent, which is significantly higher in comparison to larger companies.

During that same period, the fatality rate within companies with:

  • 11-19 employees was 12 percent
  • 20-99 employees was 23 percent
  • More than 100 employees was 15 percent

Companies with one - 10 employees took the lead within the four most common fatal construction accidents - coined the "fatal four" by OSHA. The main causes of fatalities among each of the fatal four within construction establishments with no more than 10 employees were:

  • Falls to lower levels - 61.5 percent
  • Struck-by accidents - 32.8 percent
  • Electrocutions - 55.6 percent
  • Caught-in/between accidents - 44.9 percent

The following subsectors experienced the highest rate of fatalities within establishments with one - 10 employees:

  • Residential building - 77.5 percent
  • Siding contractors - 75.7 percent
  • Framing contractors - 75 percent
  • Painting and wall covering - 72.9 percent
  • Roofing contractors - 70.7 percent
  • Masonry contractors - 65.6 percent
  • Drywall and insulation - 56.3 percent
  • Plumbing, heating, and air-conditioning - 52.1 percent

What to do if you've been hurt in a construction accident

We're not advocating against small construction companies. Whatever the size of an establishment, it's important that those supervising work sites go the extra mile to protect workers. Even when workers survive serious construction accidents, they may sustain debilitating injuries that can leave them out of work for months, or permanently.

If you sustained an injury on the job, your recovery may be extensive and costly. Additionally, filing for a workers' compensation claim may be overwhelming and confusing. That's why you need an experienced attorney on your side who can help you navigate the process.

At Schweickert & Ganassin LLP, we'll make sure that your paperwork is properly filled out and all documents supporting your claim are made available. Our legal team will also negotiate with insurance companies for a fair settlement to cover your medical expenses and partial wages. Contact us today to learn more.

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