The necessity of road construction projects in Louisiana is undeniable. Nevertheless, areas of construction pose unique hazards for everyone. Construction workers themselves are particularly vulnerable, and nothing illustrates this vulnerability more dramatically than an accident in a construction zone that injures or kills a road worker.
Unfortunately, such an accident occurred early Wednesday morning in which a construction worker died after a vehicle struck him on Interstate 10 in Iberville Parish. He was a 48-year-old man from Land O’ Lakes Florida, part of the crew employed with re-opening a lane that had closed for construction overnight.
A westbound vehicle struck both the construction worker and the arrow board sign that he was attaching to a company pickup for purposes of traffic control. The force of the collision resulted in injuries severe enough to require responders to transport the construction worker to the hospital, where he later died.
Charges are currently pending against the driver, who received only minor injuries due to proper use of restraints. Authorities obtained a toxicology sample from the driver but do not have a strong suspicion of impairment. The cause of the crash is still under investigation at this time.
Even if a construction worker receives compensation from an employer for injuries sustained in a road accident, if a third party is involved, the worker and his/her family may have grounds to file a personal injury or wrongful death suit, depending on the circumstances, independent of the workers’ comp claim. It may be worthwhile to discuss the possibility of a lawsuit with an attorney.