Posted On: November 5, 2009 by Steven J. Malman

Chicago Work Accident: Flagger Dies From Truck Accident Injuries Sustained in Highway Construction Zone

A construction worker died on Saturday in a highway work zone. According to Chicago Ridge police, flagger Joseph Bartkowiaki was fatally injured when a gravel truck that was heading for Crowley-Sheppard Asphalt hit him. Joseph Bartkowiaki worked for the company. Stanislaw Wdowikowski, also 56, was driving the gravel truck.

Bartkowiaki was directing traffic in an area were the company was repaving the street. Wdowikowski says he thought that the flagger was directing him to go forward, but witnesses say that wasn’t the case.

The truck driver struck the construction worker. He stopped his large truck when he heard people yelling at him. Wdowikowski backed up too far, striking Bartkowiaki again.

Police cited the truck driver for failing to stop for a flagger.

The National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse reports that there were 31 Illinois motor vehicle crashes in construction/maintenance zones in 2008. is reporting 5 Illinois road construction site deaths for that year.

In some cases, the victim is a motor vehicle occupant. In other instances, the victim is a construction worker who was doing a job in the work zone.

The parties in charge of the construction/maintenance zone must implement that all safety precautions are in place to decrease the chances of a worker getting injured or a motor vehicle accident happening. Failure to exercise this duty of care can be grounds for a Chicago injury lawsuit. Construction workers injured on the job are likely entitled to Illinois workers’ compensation benefits.

Common causes of construction zone accidents:

• Distracted drivers
• Equipment and machinery defects
• Poor barricade placement
• Warning signs that are not easily visible
• Inadequate worker training
• Machinery accidents
• Motor vehicle accidents

Construction worker dies in accident, Southtown Star, November 1, 2009

Construction worker struck and killed by truck, Chicago Breaking News, October 31, 2009

Related Web Resources: (PDF)

Federal Highway Administration

For your free case evaluation, contact our Chicago, Illinois workers' compensation law firm today.

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