Worker struck by metal ball on head seeks benefits

Kelly Holleran Jul. 21, 2010, 3:00am

Despite the fact that his employer has offered to pay him benefits, a man has still filed suit against it, saying he is entitled to additional benefits after he sustained injuries while working.

Robert Vandygriff claims he should receive at least $45 in maintenance per day for injuries he sustained on July 20 while working on Barge BB-1, which was owned by defendant National Maintenance and Repair.

Vandygriff sustained a closed head injury, facial lacerations and neck and back injuries after a large metal ball attached to a crane fell suddenly and struck his head, according to the complaint filed July 8 in Madison County Circuit Court.

In addition to his permanent injuries, Vandygriff lost wages and his earning capacity, experienced physical pain and mental suffering, incurred medical costs and suffered disability, the suit states.

Although National Maintenance has provided Vandygriff with medical costs and other interim benefits, Vandygriff says he is entitled to additional benefits in his suit. He does, however, admit that National Maintenance is entitled to a credit for costs it already paid.

He blames National Maintenance for causing his injuries, saying it failed to provide its employees with adequate training to perform their duties, failed to inspect the work area for hazards and failed to provide safe tools, equipment and supervision.

In his three-count complaint, Vandygriff is seeking an unspecified judgment, plus costs, pre-judgment interest and other relief the court deems just.

Samuel A. Mormino Jr. of Mormino, Velloff, Edmonds and Snider in Alton will be representing him.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-720.

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