The widow of a firefighter who lost his life battling a Chicago fire has filed a wrongful death lawsuit seeking damages of more than $50,000. The firefighter was on the job working to put out a fire in a commercial building when he fell into an unmarked elevator shaft and died. The building was under construction at the time and the lawsuit alleges that the general contractor violated OSHA safety rules. The contractor was negligent, according to the paperwork filed in the suit.
Firefighters perform a dangerous job. They work around fires and their many dangers on a regular basis. This case, however, is different. The commercial property was under renovation and the proper permits were not requested. Permits are required for any major work that is done in a building. There are many safety requirements that must be met to protect workers making the renovations. All too often, contractors and building owners circumvent the system and perform construction work without having the correct permits. This can make for a dangerous and, in this case, a deadly situation.
The contractor in this case was allegedly negligent by performing construction without the necessary safety procedures in place. Work was being done on the second floor, where the elevator shaft was completely open. There should be safety features around any open hole to make sure that nobody accidentally falls into it. The contractor knew there was a dangerous hole, yet failed to do anything to protect workers on the second floor from getting hurt. In this case, the firefighter stepped into the open shaft and fell down to the basement. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Both negligence and liability must be proven in order for a lawsuit to be successful. Contractors and sometimes building owners are responsible for keeping their buildings safe and secure. In fact, it is not just expected, it is their duty to do so. When they fail to provide safe conditions in their buildings, injuries and deaths can occur to innocent parties. Certainly the contractor should have known that safety measures must be taken to secure the area that is under renovation. OSHA requires that specific safety precautions are used to keep employees and others from getting hurt. This case demonstrates the need to check that construction permits are utilized. Unfortunately, sometimes contractors try to avoid getting permits because they can be expensive, increasing the total cost of a job.
The law limits the time you have to file a lawsuit. In this case, the deadly incident occurred recently, in December 2015. The sooner you are able to file a lawsuit, the better. An accident of this type takes a toll on the victim’s family as well as others who work in the building. If you lose a loved one to another party’s failure to observe correct safety procedures,there is no need to suffer without getting the money you deserve. Get the money you and your family deserve after the wrongful death of a loved one. Contact the experienced wrongful death lawyers at Michael T. Friedman & Associates, PC for a consultation today.
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