Six construction workers at a Miami office tower project at 830 Brickell Avenue were injured and two were in critical condition Wednesday, after a heavy load of rebar came loose from a crane while being raised and fell toward the ground, impaling two of the laborers. Emergency crews using large tools cut through the steel to free the trapped workers, who along with three of the others were transported to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Center.  “Something malfunctioned and it came loose,” said Miami Fire Rescue Lt. Pete Sanchez. “The two trapped under the rubble were impaled by rebar in their upper body. We cut them out.” No one on the ground outside the construction site in Mary Brickell Village was injured.

Late Wednesday afternoon, Civic Construction released a statement saying five of their workers were injured and that all of them were “alert and conscious” at the hospital. A sixth employee was treated on the scene and released, the company said.

File a claim.

A competent attorney can answer questions regarding a workers’ compensation claim.  The State of Florida requires employers to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees with a coverage requirement specific to the type of industry, the number of employees, and the business structure of the entity, as follows:

  • Construction businesses must have insurance if they have 1 or more employees, including business owners, who are officers, or limited liability company (LLC) members.
  • Non-construction businesses must have insurance if there are 4 or more employees, including business owners who are officers, or limited liability company (LLC) members.
  • Out of state workers have specific requirements based on the type of work they will perform in Florida. If they have insurance, they must notify their home state insurance carrier who may use an extraterritorial reciprocity clause to cover out-of-state employees while working in Florida. If they have no insurance, they must apply for a Florida policy.
  • Contractors who use sub-contractors must have worker’s compensation before beginning a project in accordance with Florida’s Administrative Code.  If a sub-contractor does not have insurance, it is the responsibility of the contractor to pay for benefits related to injuries, illness, or death.

Legal action.

Depending on an employee’s relationship with the employer, a Florida workers’ compensation lawyer can help with filing claims, or when necessary, initiating legal action to cover damages of an injured worker.  Damages could cost more than purchasing the insurance in the first place.

Time limitations and counsel.

A Florida workers’ compensation claim must be filed within 2 years from the date of, or after the initial 2 years, within one year of the last payment of compensation for medical care and treatment. Contact a Florida workers’ compensation attorney for a free consultation regarding workers’ compensation concerns with an employer.