Studies of 2011 and 2012 workplace accidents indicate that self-employed construction workers in Maryland and around the country are more likely to be killed in an on-the-job accident than those who work for a construction company. The studies also reveal that older construction workers are far more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than their younger colleagues.
The figures show that fatalities in the construction industry as a whole increased by 8.7 percent between 2011 and 2012. However, the increase in fatalities among workers between the ages of 55 and 64 was 15.2 percent, but only a 1.9 percent increase was observed among workers between the ages of 18 and 44. Observers say that the statistics show how accidents that may cause injuries to younger workers can be fatal to their older colleagues.
The increase in fatality rates among self-employed construction workers was found to be far higher than those observed among wage-and-salary workers. The fatality rate among those drawing a paycheck went up by 4.4 percent between 2011 and 2012, but among the self-employed the increase was 27.8 percent. Some observers feel that the data indicates that self-employed workers may be more likely to take chances on the job and could expose themselves to additional risks by cutting corners.
Those who suffer workplace injuries may be eligible to seek benefits under their employer's workers' compensation program. However, the application process can sometimes be confusing. An attorney with experience in this area could assist injured workers with the preparation of their claims to ensure that they receive the benefits they are entitled to. An attorney could also advocate on behalf of injured workers at a subsequent hearing in the event that the claims are disputed or denied.