This blog has often noted the possibility of the family of a deceased worker seeking damages for the worker’s wrongful death in a work-related accident. Specifically, the blog has pointed out the potential for seeking damages from a party that was not the employer of the dead worker but that may be at fault for a work-related accident. This scenario has played out in a lawsuit recently filed in Danbury Superior Court.
The worker in question was working on repairs to a telephone line at Eversource Company when the fatal accident occurred. The worker was an employee of KTI Utility Construction and Maintenance, LLC, which had been hired to make the necessary repairs. The employee and a co-worker were using a power boom on the back of a KTI truck to move a telephone pole into place. As the co-worker who was manipulating the pole moved it into place, the deceased worker was standing on the ground waiting to guide the pole into position. A metal claw on the boom struck struck an energized electrical transmission line, electrocuting the worker on the ground.
The lawsuit alleges that the work involved ultra-hazardous activity, which provides an exception to the general law that an injured or deceased worker cannot seek damages from an employer. The family is also suing the owner of the property. The suit alleges that applicable safety regulations required that the nearby power lines should have been shut down before the work began and that KTI should have used a three-person crew.
Anyone who has suffered an injury or lost a loved one in a workplace accident may wish to consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney for advice on how to recover workers’ compensation benefits and whether a separate, third-party action is viable.