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Workers trapped following construction accident

On July 11 at approximately 1:17 p.m., the fourth floor of the science building at Temple University in North Philadelphia collapsed. The building had been under unspecified construction. Following the collapse, workers on the fifth and sixth floors were temporarily unable to leave the building.

The portion of the building that collapsed was approximately 200 feet by 400 feet. The area is located near Polett Block and North 11 Street. Officials were not able to immediately determine the cause of the construction accident. It took approximately one hour for emergency responders to clear the scene.

A spokesman for the fire department stated that no injuries were reported immediately following the accident. However, an NBC10 helicopter took live footage of the scene that showed a person on a stretcher apparently being attended to by emergency responders. Am ambulance later removed that person from the scene. No additional details were released.

Employers are legally required to carry workers' compensation insurance to protect employees that are injured on the job. An employee may be entitled to receive compensation for lost wages or medical bills, even without showing that the employer was at fault for the injury. It may also be possible to obtain a settlement to help offset future medical bills or to compensate for permanent injuries. An employer that does not carry insurance as required may be liable for additional damages to compensate for the employee's pain and suffering. A licensed workers' compensation attorney may be able to assist injured workers by negotiating a settlement. It may also be possible to file suit against the employer to ensure that employees who have been injured receive the compensation to which they are entitled.

Source: Philly.com, "Partial collapse at Temple University construction site traps workers", Brian X. McCrone, July 11, 2013

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