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Building collapse: 1 worker dead, 1 suffers workplace injuries

A partial building collapse has left one man dead and another injured on an out-of-state work site, according to sources local to the incident. Fire officials confirmed that one man was killed on scene while the other suffered serious workplace injuries. Iowa construction workers live with this sort of danger every day, which is one reason why the workers' compensation program exists at the state level. 

According to the accident report, at approximately 10:30 a.m. the morning of Oct. 30, 19 construction workers were working in a building scheduled to be demolished. For reasons unknown, a V-shaped collapse took place, trapping two of the workers in the building while the rest escaped under their own power. Of the two, one was pronounced dead at the scene when rescue workers finally managed to reach them. 

The second worker was trapped in the rubble for several hours while rescue workers worked to free him. It was reportedly difficult to free the man without causing the rubble to shift in ways that might cause further collapse of the building or shift the rubble so as to further injure the worker. He was eventually freed, though he suffered very serious injuries. An investigation is ongoing to determine the cause of the collapse. 

As here in Iowa, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is notified of such accidents, at which time they launch an investigation in cooperation with local organizations to determine the cause of incident and review safety protocols in place on the job site. Workplace injuries are often preventable, so it is crucial to correct any issues with safety standards in advance of another accident. In addition, the injured party will be entitled to a compensation package to help him and his family during his recovery time, and the family of the deceased will likely receive a similar package to ease the burden of final arrangements and to provide surviving dependents with financial relief due to the death of the worker. 

Source:, "1 Worker Killed, 1 Injured in Partial Midtown Building Collapse", Josh Robin, Oct. 30, 2015

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