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California contractor drowns in workplace accident

It may not seem to many California residents that doing maintenance on a golf course would be hazardous work.  However, every job has its own set of dangers.  For instance, a contractor was recently killed in a workplace accident at PGA West’s Private Course, named for Jack Nicklaus.  Now, the California Division of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has come in to conduct an investigation.

The victim and others who worked for a company contracted by the golf course were in a boat on a lake, clearing weeds.  Somehow, the man fell out of the boat into the water.  His coworkers went into the lake to attempt a rescue but were not able to locate him in the water.

This occurred at approximately 1:55 p.m.  It was not until around 8 p.m. that a dive team with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department located the victim’s body.  The golf course management released a statement that they are cooperating with authorities in the ongoing investigations.  Additionally, they offered their condolences to the man’s family.

Nevertheless, those condolences may not provide much solace to the family who is now having to struggle with his loss.  Most likely, they are anxiously awaiting the conclusion of the investigations to understand how their loved one died in this workplace accident.  In the meantime, they may be eligible for benefits under the California workers’ compensation system.  Such benefits will likely provide funds for the funeral and burial of the worker, and may provide the family with a compensation package for the loss of his income. The family has every right to investigate its legal options in the aftermath of the tragedy.

Source:, “Cal/OSHA investigate drowning at PGA West”, P.J. Edgell and Rich Tarpening, Sept. 16, 2014