Updated on: 9/22/2021
A construction worker, reported to be a plasterer, was tragically killed Monday afternoon, in what officials called an industrial accident.
The worker was on-site at the new Washington State Convention Center expansion on 9th Avenue between Olive Street and Pine Street. The fire department was called to the scene slightly before 2 p.m. but the worker was said to be dead at the scene.
According to reports, a scissor lift fell from the second floor of the project to the street below.
The Department of Labor and Industries is investigating the matter, so more information about what events led up to this tragedy will not be available until the conclusion of the investigation.
Legal Rights for Victims’ Families
The insurmountable grief that comes from losing a loved one is already too much placed on the shoulders of the family of someone killed as the result of a wrongful death. In this case, such a tragic accident can be hard to wrap one’s head around, especially because there are so many factors at play. Liability is going to be extremely difficult to sort out, and The Department of Labor and Industries might not conclude their investigation for many weeks.
Because a case like this is so complex, the best option for the surviving family of the victim would be to consult with an experienced wrongful death attorney. If possible, the details of filing a wrongful death suit would be in the hands of the legal team working the case, rather than the family who are just trying to cope day-to-day. Construction site injuries and deaths are complicated because there are often a number of sub-contractors on site which could shift liability from the main contractor to the sub-contractor. Additionally, this site is a city project which could add another level of liability, though it is unlikely.
One of the most important unknown factors is who was responsible for the proper use and handling of the lift that ultimately fell. If the worker who was killed was part of a sub-contracted group, and someone from that same group had improperly parked the lift causing it to fall, then there might not be much action to take. The labor union and The Department of Labor and Industries would likely handle the case with the family, and an attorney would not provide much assistance in that case. However, if the reason the lift fell was due to improper operation from a third party, or even malfunction, then it may be possible to file suit against that third party for wrongful death.
Because cases like these have so many unknowns and are so complex, meeting with a lawyer to discuss the details is always a good idea. The labor of tracing liability should not reside with grieving family members. An experienced wrongful death legal team will know exactly where to look to find out if there was a maintenance issue that was neglected, or if an employer made hasty hires due to staffing shortages and those hires lacked the proper experience to be working on that project.
Davis Law Group has been representing the families of wrongful death victims for over twenty years. We offer free case evaluations for victims and their families to best determine if they may be helped by hiring an attorney to represent them. If you would like to set up a free consultation, you can contact us using the chat or contact form on this page, or by calling 206-727-4000.