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Falling tape measure kills construction worker on the ground

On Behalf of | Nov 7, 2014 | Construction Law

Even if you’ve never been on a construction site here in California, you probably know that these sites can be incredibly dangerous. From heavy machinery to structure collapses, there are a lot of things that can turn a normal day into one that involves a serious or fatal injury.

Such was the case in New Jersey this week where something as simple as a falling tape measure resulted in the death of a 58-year-old man. Some residents here in the San Diego area may have heard about the construction accident that now stands as a reminder to the nation about just how dangerous construction sites can be and why enforcing safety is so important at these sites.

The fatal accident occurred at a New Jersey work site where the 58-year-old man was delivering sheetrock. Sometime after exiting his vehicle, a tape measure fell from a worker’s belt fifty stories up, which caused the construction tool to quickly accelerate to the ground below. Reports indicate that the tool ricocheted off a piece of equipment near the ground before striking the 58-year-old man in the head.

Although some are calling this a freak accident — one that may never be duplicated again — some construction workers believe that if the victim had been instructed to and was wearing a safety helmet at the time of the accident, he might have survived with only serious injuries.

Because New Jersey has different laws concerning workers’ compensation and death benefits, it’s difficult to say if this accident will result in compensation for the victim’s family or not. What can be said though is that if a similar accident were to have happened here in California, then the victim’s family would likely seek the compensation that is owed to them, possibly with the help of a skilled lawyer, especially considering the expenses associated with an unplanned funeral.

Source: CBS New York, “Man Killed By Tape Measure In Freak Accident At Jersey City Construction Site,” Nov. 3, 2014

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