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Workers die at DuPont plant trying to help colleagues

Workers' compensation is a type of insurance given to employees when an employee suffers an injury during the course of authorized work. Pennsylvania law dictates that any employee who suffers an injury due to his work or negligence of the employer is entitled to worker's compensation.

Recently, two employees of DuPoint lost their lives trying to save a female co-worker. While trying to save the colleague, the heroes came into contact with toxic methyl mercaptan fumes. Not being equipped with masks, both employees succumbed to the toxic fumes. One of their colleagues had rushed in later to their help, but sadly help did not arrive on time. The DuPont plant has received various citations for cases of workplace injuries in the recent past, in Pennsylvania and other states. Dealing with toxic material is intrinsically hazardous.

Workers' compensation cases can become rather complicated. Work related accidents can lead to major disabilities or chronic illness that may lead to unemployment and lengthy medical cases. One of the major hindrances in proving a case for workers' compensation lies in the fact that the burden of proof lies on the shoulders of the claimant. Establishing an employer's negligence toward safety at the plant can be a complicated task.

Many times, the defense team tries to establish that the injury suffered by the workers did not happen during the course of employment or that it was a pre-existing injury. Proving such cases may be difficult for the victim or their dependents. In cases where the employer's liability has been proven, courts usually award significant compensation to the victim or family members.

Source: CHRON.com, "DuPont plant workers died rushing to help," Mike Morris, accessed on Nov. 16, 2014

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