While workplaces in Pennsylvania and across the country hold certain risks, manufacturers can potentially protect workers from serious injury by putting safety features on heavy machinery. Failure to ensure that equipment is safe could result in litigation. In fact, a family in another state was recently awarded $30 million in a lawsuit that stemmed from a fatality involving dangerous equipment.
The incident that led to a 34-year-old man’s death happened in 2013. The man was working at R.J. Noble Co., a recycling company. While he was attempting to loosen rock and debris, he became trapped in the conveyor belt and tail pulley of a machine.
The lawsuit against the manufacturer of the equipment, General Equipment & Supplies, claimed that there was a failure to install a protective mechanism that would have stopped the machine without a protective guard in place. It further claims that there were no safety features that would have allowed the machine to be stopped immediately in the case of an emergency. The jury determined that the manufacturer was 70 percent responsible for the man’s death.
The lawsuit was filed by the mother of the deceased man’s children on their behalf. Unfortunately, companies in Pennsylvania that do not take appropriate action to protect operators from dangerous equipment could potentially face a lawsuit. Often, taking such action is the only way that the victims of a workplace accident — including the surviving family members in the event of a fatality — can ensure their financial security. An attorney with experience with such cases can help families pursue the most appropriate path to justice.
Source: NBC Los Angeles, “Jury Awards $30 Million in Fatal Grinder Machine Accident“, March 19, 2018