A 19-year-old woman was killed after she was crushed with a backhoe bucket while working at a construction site in San Antonio, the San Antonio Express-News reported.
Destiny Rodriguez was at a dig site in the 13700 block of Potranco Road on Monday morning when the backhoe operator, who didn’t see Rodriguez, dropped the bucket on her, said Sgt. Roger Pedraza with the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office.
Rodriguez died at the scene. The operator, who was identified as the foreman, was hospitalized, likely for shock, Pedraza said.
“She would help anyone,” Rodriguez’s sister, Rosa Rodriguez, told the Express-News. “If she were on her last five dollars, she would give it to you.”
Rodriguez and her brother both worked for the Step It Up Construction company. She had complained before about the company not following safety guidelines, Rosa Rodriguez said.
She said her sister was injured at the construction site last week when the same backhoe operator reportedly knocked her leg with the machinery causing a grapefruit-sized bruise on the back.
Another employee, Edward Gonzales, described the backhoe operator as “always careless,” and told the Express-News he’s always breaking pipes.
The company was cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration twice in 2014 for two “serious” violations. According to records, the total $3,200 fine has been referred to debt collection.
OSHA has started an investigation into Rodriguez’s death, the U.S. Department of Labor told KSAT-TV.
Construction Accidents & Deaths
Construction is one of the United States’ largest industries and unfortunately, construction site accidents kill and injure thousands of workers each year. Despite legal and trade provisions in place to prevent construction accidents, one out of every ten construction workers suffers some kind of on the job injury which can include:
Power line injuries
Fire & explosion
Scaffolding, crane, conveyor, ladder, winch, grater, scraper, backhoe & boiler accidents
Although many injured construction workers will be entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits, these benefits will not cover all of the expenses faced by an injured worker and generally do not cover pain and suffering and the full range of damages available to the loved ones of a worker who is killed in an accident. Moreover, there are often claims to be made outside of Workers’ Compensation against negligent third parties and contractors.
Knowledge of federal and state regulations governing construction sites is imperative when developing theories against all of the third parties who may be responsible for a construction site accident. Our team is experienced in representing clients who have been injured in a construction site accident and immediately go forward with preservation of evidence and identification and questioning of critical witnesses.