[fusion_dropcap boxed=”no” boxed_radius=”” class=”” id=”” color=””]S[/fusion_dropcap]aturday, April 28 was Worker Memorial Day. It was a day to remember all workers who died at work as a consequence of an injury that occurred to them on the job.

No one goes to work to die. We go to work to earn a living, and while deaths to Oregonians while working have gone down in recent years, there are still too many.

In 2017, 36 people died as a consequence of something that happened to them while at work. We should take a little time to remember those people, and a little time to make sure that when we go to work, we are safe, and we are focused on our surroundings to make sure that neither we nor our coworkers die while at work.

Here is a list of the 36 Oregonians that died at work in 2017:

  • Mark Aletky, Airplane Pilot
  • Ruben Andrade-Garcia, Farmworker
  • Jodie Averett, Rancher
  • Ryan Bagley, Cook
  • Rodrigo Baltazar-Martinez, Construction Worker
  • Byron Berry, Truck Driver
  • Michael Brown, Firefighter
  • Brian Brunscher, Truck Driver
  • Colt Campbell, Timber Cutter
  • James Chaplin, Truck Driver
  • Bentley Chappel, IV, Vineyard Laborer
  • Jose Genaro Colohua Sanchez, Farmworker
  • Brian Conley, Truck Driver
  • Francis Crispen, Electrician
  • Artemio Cruz-Garcia, Forestry Worker
  • Ronald Davis, Construction Foreman
  • Pablo Dominguez-Amezcua, Construction Worker
  • Jay Elwell, Repair Technician
  • Dominic Ferraro, Farmworker
  • Ricky Forbes, Truck Driver
  • Christopher Garett, Delivery Driver
  • Ronny Gassner, Logger
  • Gregory George, Technician
  • Joseph Greiner, Arborist
  • Asa Hammon, Construction Worker
  • Vanessa Hazzard, Production Manager
  • Gary Henderson, Truck Driver
  • Justin Hook, Log Truck Driver
  • William Hunnicutt, Mechanic
  • Martin Lavell, Construction Flagger
  • Cherlyn Lewis, Delivery Driver
  • Antonio Mendoza Alcaraz, Logging Supervisor
  • Douglas Mitchell, Truck Driver
  • Scott Munn, Farmworker
  • Steven Netcher, Farmer
  • Shane Powell, Construction Worker
  • Mark Price, Maintenance Employee
  • Robert Prock, Farmworker
  • Carl Roberts, Delivery Driver
  • Dalton Rodriguez, Groundskeeper
  • Casey Schlundt, Logging Chaser
  • Ronald Schulty, Delivery Driver
  • Ronald Scurlock, Truck Driver
  • James Shorten, Truck Driver
  • Raymond Stelzer, Warehouseman
  • Taylor Whitney-Leigh, Construction Worker
  • Ryan Yancey, Truck Driver
  • Jared Zeigler, Construction Laborer

Names on this fatality list are compiled from Oregon-OSHA reports, workers’ compensation data, and newspaper reports.

Source: nwlaborpress.org

There are benefits that a worker gets if the death is a consequence of something that happens at work. First, funeral expenses, including but not limited to: transportation of the body are to be paid, not to exceed 20 times the average weekly wage. The insurer or self-insured employer shall pay bills submitted for disposition and funeral expenses up to the benefit limit. If any of the benefits remains unpaid 60 days after a claim acceptance, the insurer or self-insured employer shall pay the unpaid amount to the estate of the worker. If the worker is survived by a spouse, monthly benefits shall be paid in an amount equal to 4.35 times 66 2/3 percent of the state’s average weekly wage to the surviving spouse. The payment shall cease at the end of the month in which remarriage occurs. If the worker is survived by a spouse and there are dependent children, the benefit shall be paid in an amount equal to 4.35 times 10 percent of the state’s average weekly wage for each child of the deceased until the child becomes 18.

There are additional benefits depending upon children and whether the spouse survives. If there is no surviving spouse and no surviving dependents, then the only thing that the insurance company has to pay is the burial expenses.


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