Steven Dierkes Killed In Industrial Accident At Mapleton Caterpillar Foundry
Wrongful Death - June 6, 2022
Steven Dierkes Died In Industrial Accident After Falling Into Crucible At Caterpillar Foundry In Mapleton
MAPLETON, ILLINOIS (June 6, 2022) – A worker identified as Steven Dierkes, 39, died in a Mapleton industrial accident after falling into a crucible at Caterpillar Foundry.
Peoria County officials are saying that the accident took place around 8:54 a.m. on Thursday. Steven Dierkes was working near a crucible when he fell into it under unclear circumstances.
A crucible is a ceramic or metal container that is used to melt metals or other substances by heating them to a very high temperature. Paramedics were called to the Caterpillar Foundry in order to help the victim.
Sadly, Steven Dierkes was pronounced dead at the scene. The Peoria County Sheriff’s Office and OSHA are currently investigating what happened.
Liability In Mapleton Industrial Accidents
Falls are one of the leading causes of workplace injury and death. In fact, OSHA has dubbed falls one of the “fatal four” causes of workplace injury. According to data from the EHS Daily Advisor, “Approximately 36.5% of all deaths in the workplace occurred due to employees falling. These includes workers who have fallen due to unprotected sides or holes, improperly constructed walking or working surfaces, workers who have fallen off ladders, roofs, scaffolding, large skyscraper construction areas, etc., all due to failure to use proper fall protection.” The vast majority of these falls can be prevented when companies adhere to OSHA fall protection requirements. There are a number of steps that companies should take in order to prevent workers from being injured in falls.
- Workers should receive adequate training before they start their job.
- Guardrails should be installed in certain locations where workers are exposed to heights of 6 feet or more from the nearest platform or floor.
- Workers should receive personal fall-arrest systems (PFAS) when they must be exposed to heights of six feet or more.
- All workplaces should be kept in a relatively safe condition.
When a worker is injured or killed on the job in Illinois, they or their family will typically have recourse through worker’s compensation. Worker’s compensation in Illinois is a no-fault insurance program. In other words, the injured worker or their family does not need to demonstrate that some entity was negligent and contributed to an accident. An injured worker will need to show (a) they were injured on the job, (b) they meet the definition of an “employee” and (c) their injuries required medical attention.
Depending on the facts of any case, an injured worker or their family may have legal recourse through a third party liability claim. A third party liability claim may be possible if an entity separate from a worker’s employer contributed to an accident. For example, a general contractor could be liable for a fall accident if they failed to prevent or eliminate fall hazards. Nearly all workplace falls are preventable when the right safety measures are in place. There are a number of steps that should be taken after any workplace accident.
- Surveillance footage of the accident should be sought.
- Medical records should be preserved.
- Eye witnesses should be interviewed.
- Safety records should be examined.
- A thorough, independent investigation should be conducted.
The family of any worker that is killed on the job may have recourse through a civil claim. Damages can help cover many of the unexpected expenses that can come with the loss of a loved one. It is extremely important that evidence is properly preserved after any workplace accident. A wrongful death attorney can examine all of the facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.
Investigating A Mapleton Industrial Accident
We at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates extend our deepest condolences to the family of Steven Dierkes. Any person that may have more information about what happened should reach out to OSHA investigators. It is our sincere hope that measures will be put in place to help make this work site safer for everyone. A company should always prioritize the safety of its workforce.
Do you need more information about a Mapleton industrial accident? Our team of workplace safety advocates are here to answer any questions that you may have. We care deeply that accident victims are aware of their rights and that companies are doing everything in their power to protect workers. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into an accident we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at (312) 564-4256.