Aspen Claims Service

Northern District of Texas Finds Employee Exclusion Bars Coverage for Contractor’s Death

 Tuesday, January 25, 2022

 Tressler LLP

Recently, the Northern District of Texas found a commercial general liability policy did not provide coverage for the death of a utility contractor who suffocated after he was buried in a pit of gravel by another worker.

The Tarrant Regional Water District hired IPL Partners to perform construction work on an integrated pipeline in Venus, Texas.

IPL then subcontracted with Oscar Renda Contracting, Inc. to perform excavation and pipelaying.

Nabor Machuca-Mercado, a laborer for Oscar Renda Contracting suffocated to death while working on the pipeline after he was buried by another worker in a trench of gravel.

The children of Mr. Machuca-Mercado brought suit against Oscar Renda Contracting, Inc. alleging, among other things, that the contractor failed to properly hire, train and supervise its workers and failed to barricade the dangerous areas.