Brooklyn Man Gets Crushed In Deadly Forklift Accident

The New York Daily News reported today that a man was killed when a forklift crushed a Brooklyn worker in a freak accident Tuesday night.

Gustavo Tapia, 22, was killed while using a walk-behind forklift to push a co-worker – who was manning another forklift – up a ramp to a rooftop parking area, authorities said. Authorities said that the co-worker’s forklift rolled back and pinned Tapia against the wall.

The Brighton Beach man suffered serious chest injuries in the accident just before 6 p.m. and was taken to Kings County Hospital in critical condition. He died a short time later.

Police said that no one is expected to be charged with a crime.

This tragedy very well have an equally bad legal remedy as the deceased worker according to the news reports was working for the same company that owned the forklift. If that is the facts, then the family and estate of the killed worker will have no legal remedy to commence a lawsuit. Rather, there only legal option for any type of compensation would be a workers’ compensation claim with the insurance carrier for the decedent’s employer.

Legal Options for Fatal Workplace Accidents

Workers’ compensation exists to protect workers injured on the job. In case of an injury on the job, worker’s compensation should cover lost earnings and medical bills and treatments. However, when a worker is hurt on the job and not through the negligence of a 3rd party (someone other than his employer, fellow employee or agent of employer) an injured worker may not sue his employer. This law and legislation, while seemingly unfair on some level, really does protect the injured worker.