According to a recent Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations report, fatal accidents in the workplace are becoming more common. It is known that certain industries put employees at an increased risk of injury or death, such as the construction industry, emergency first responders, and those who work in an industrial setting, but in this age of OSHA education and access to employee training, this is a surprising statistic.

The Missouri 2017 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries News Release indicated that there were 125 deadly workplace accidents in Missouri – this is up substantially from 106 fatal accidents in the state in 2014. Last year, almost 89% of workplace accidents resulting in death occurred in private industry (111). Over the past five years, the leading place of fatal workplace accidents has been on streets, highways, air, rail, and water with farms coming in a distant second More than half of these accidents have been roadway crashes involving motor vehicles. Coming in second in fatal workplace accidents are those caused by other individuals’ violence and exposure to animals. Many on-the-job automobile accidents cause serious injury or death, especially for highway or road workers.

Many of these cases are precluded from lawsuits and are limited only to what one may obtain from a Workers’ Compensation claim. However, there are some circumstances when the injury was caused by a defective product, defectively designed machine or by the negligence of a third person or party. Those entities or individuals are not protected by Work Comp laws and may have claims in tort law (or personal injury). While we refer to these occurrences as “accidents,” many of the situations that take workers’ lives each day across our country are not actually mistakes made by employees, but incidents that could have been prevented by others who were negligent.

One life lost on the job in Kansas City or any city in Missouri is one life too many. Family members who have lost a loved one due to a workplace accident caused by another’s negligence may wish to file a wrongful death lawsuit. While there are limitations to filing lawsuits against employers, an experienced wrongful death or personal injury attorney can help guide you through the complex maze. Our Kansas City injury and wrongful death lawyers realize that money cannot replace a loved one, but there are practical issues of daily living for which compensation may be due. The losses are not only emotionally traumatic, but also can be financially devastating to family members, especially if the deceased was the primary or sole income provider. For outstanding legal support and guidance, contact Griggs Injury Law, LLC today.

For businesses who want to improve their safety programs for Missouri workers, the Missouri Department of Labor has launched a new website designed to do just that: