Posted: January 28, 2012
Today a casino in Cincinnati partially collapsed injuring multiple construction workers. If I were one of the injured workers I would have many questions about who should pay for my injuries. Construction injuries may have multiple sources of recovery. The Cincinnati construction workers certainly have the right to seek workers compensation benefits. The law that gives them the right to seek workers compensation benefits also makes it extremely difficult to sue their employer for all the compensation they are entitled to. You can not sue your employer for negligence. Ohio workers compensation benefits only provide limited compensation. However if someone other than the Cincinnati casino contstrcuction workers employer was the cause of the casino floor collapse they could be a potential defendant to seek money damages for the construction workers injuries over and above the limited compensation Ohio workers compensation provides. As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer I have been involved in construction injuries where workers compensation benefits were paid to my client and my injured worker client also was able to get compensation from a third party whose negligence caused the injury. One case involved a superintendant for a home builder that fell through an unprotected hole in the floor decking and was caused a severe spinal injury that prevented the injured worker from ever working again. The hole had been left by the framers of the house under construction who had cut it for a stairwell but had not properly covered the hole. In the Cincinnati casino that collapsed it appears the general contractor Messer Construction construction company is already putting their spin on. Here's a quote from them, "Our top priority is to ensure everyone at our job sites can return home safely to their families at the end of each day," President and Chief Executive Tom Keckeis of Messer Construction, general contractor for the project, said after thanking the rescue personnel. "We have stringent safety processes and protocols in place to ensure our job sites remain safe and our structures secure." If that's the case how could this collapse of the floor decking occured. And you just can't rely on OSHA to do an investigation that can be totally trusted especially when there statement is: "These are elite companies with an excellent safety record." Because construction projects are constantly changing, it makes more sense to allow firms with good safety records to oversee safety training and procedures for subcontractors on site, Wilkerson said. So from my point of view as a personal injury lawyer something went horribly wrong and odds are it could have been prevented. I mean these things don't just happen out of the blue. You can bet that there will be denials or finger pointing between the entities involved. Rock Gaming LLC and Ceasr's entertainment are the developers. Messer is the general contractor. For the downtown Cincinnati casino project there are several different bid packages for concrete work. Monroe-based Baker Concrete Co., one of the nation's largest concrete suppliers, provided concrete for exterior foundations and some vertical columns, but not for the concrete decking. Cincinnati-based Jostin Construction Co. was overseeing the concrete decking installation for the casino, according to contractors familiar with the project. A spokesman for Jostin didn't immediately respond for comment on Friday. Hilltop has supplied about 66,000 yards of concrete for the casino project but wasn't part of the bid package for the casino decking. Some locals are already giving conjecture on what happened . Such as: Dr. Ihab Saab, chairman of the construction management program at Northern Kentucky University, said, "Based on my limited knowledge of what happened, it appears to me the problem may have originated in the metal decking supporting the poured concrete and how that decking was connected to the steel beam building structure." Construction workers unite. Make sure you take charge of your life. When your financial and physical well being is at stake make sure you know your rights and have the help of someone who has your interests at heart. Provided as a public service by Anthony Castelli Cincinnati attorney.