In a heartbreaking accident, an acrobat plummeted to her death during a live performance of Cirque du Soleil’s Las Vegas show “Ka” at the MGM Casino. The Las Vegas Sun reports that aerialist Sarah Guillot-Guyard was suspended high above the stage when she suddenly fell over 50 feet into the pit below.
While tragic, there is something to be said about the fact that this was the first death to occur onstage during a Cirque du Soleil performance since the troupe’s debut 30 years ago. While other accidents have occurred, founder Guy Laliberte prides himself on safety. In a 2011 news release, Cirque touted a study by five university physician-scientists in Canada and the United States, concluding that the incidence of severe injuries at Cirque was “markedly lower than for National Collegiate Athletic Assn. sports such as football, hockey, soccer, basketball and gymnastics in the United States.”
Job safety for the rest of us
Granted, most of us are not circus performers and probably consider our jobs to be relatively safe. But no matter where you work, there are risks. Ohio law states that all employers have a duty to protect their employees. They must provide a safe work environment, provide proper safety gear, establish “safe methods and processes,” set reasonable hours and “do every other thing reasonably necessary to protect the life, health, and welfare” of its employees. (Ohio Revised Code §§ 4101.11 – 4101.12)
When an accident does occur at work, it can have a debilitating effect. An injured person should be able to focus on getting better, not have to fight an employer or insurance company to receive the benefits he or she is due.
Unfortunately for a seriously injured employee, a workers’ compensation claim can seem like a confusing maze. Each turn brings more questions, such as: Who was responsible? Is my claim allowed? What if worker’s compensation doesn’t cover all my expenses? It takes an experienced attorney to navigate these complicated issues, and we can help. We do it every day.
If you or someone you love has been injured at work, the Ohio workers’ compensation lawyers at Elk & Elk will fight to protect your rights. Call 1-800-ELK-OHIO or contact us online to learn more about your legal rights and options.
Source: “Cirque du Soleil artist killed in fall from stage during ‘Ka’ at MGM Grand” by John Katsilometes, Las Vegas Sun, June 30, 2013.