Last month, a Philadelphia Zoo employee was tragically killed in an accident when a golf cart fell on him at work. The 59 year old man worked as a mechanic at the zoo. On the morning of the tragic accident, the man was late for a meeting. A co-worker went to the garage to look for him and found him pinned under the golf cart. He was transported to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was pronounced dead a little while after his arrival. It is unclear how the accident happened. *Source: www.myfoxphilly.com (Philly Zoo employee killed in golf cart accident)
A spokesperson for the zoo stated that the man was working under one of the golf carts in the zoo's fleet. Because the zoo garage is not in a public area, the spokesperson is unaware if the accident was witnessed by other zoo employees. Police say that the golf cart fell off the jack and fell on top of the man. The accident is currently under investigation.
In a tragic accident, the last thing the family of a deceased accident victim wants to do is think about legal options. However, it is something they will eventually have to think about. The family of the deceased victim has 2 legal options: filing for workers' compensation death benefits and filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the party responsible for the accident.
The right to receive workers' compensation is laid out in Pennsylvania's workers' compensation law and only certain family members can receive them. These benefits are designed to provide financial support for the family members who will suffer the most as a result of the worker's death. Therefore, people who are dependent on the deceased worker can receive these benefits, i.e., spouse and children.
If the above accident was caused by a defective jack or due to the jack malfunctioning, the company that makes the jack may be responsible for the zoo employee's accident. For example, if the jack collapsed due to a defect, then the family may file a wrongful death lawsuit against the jack manufacturer for the defective jack. Like workers' compensation death benefits, only certain family members may file a wrongful death lawsuit, such as immediate family members.
Click here to read about filing lawsuits due to defective products.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries as a result of a work-related accident, call Daniel J. O'Brien, Esq. to schedule a FREE consultation. Mr. O'Brien has been helping injured victims for 30 years. 877.944.8396