Providing a safe work environment is the goal of every employer. Sometimes this is achieved by protection in the form of supervision, protective gear, and training. However, we live in an unpredictable world. A work injury can happen at any time and anywhere.
Workers need additional protection, and this comes in the form of workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation provides the injured with peace of mind. Knowing that if there is a work injury, the employee will have his or her medical expenses paid and receive lost wages really eases stress.
It’s interesting to note that there are common workplace injuries that occur in a number of industries, for example:
- Fracking/Marcellus Shale
- Shipping/Logistics Management
- Utility Companies
- Transportation (Buses, Railroad, Trucking)
Some of these injuries seem easy to prevent by wearing protective gear, watching where you’re going or inspecting equipment before use, but there are employers and employees that take shortcuts to save time and/or money. The most common work injuries are:
- Repetitive Motion Injuries: These are injuries that affect the back, wrists, knees, and shoulders. When a worker constantly bends down, lifts something or moves an object, wear and tear can damage muscles, tendons, and ligaments. They can also cause a sudden injury as well.
- Machine Entanglement/Crushing: Heavy machinery and equipment can cause a worker to get caught in a machine by clothing or hair. Someone who works with heavy products, such as drywall can be crushed if the stack of drywall sheets falls onto him or her.
- Vehicle/Trucking Accidents: These accidents can be caused by a driver who is careless, under the influence, sleep deprived, a mechanical issue, or just human error.
- Workplace Violence: Over the years, there have been increasing reports of violence at work from a disgruntled employee or patient. Most all of these incidences involve a gun and fatalities.
- Walking Into Injuries: This is when a worker walks or runs into something, such as a wall, window, glass, hole …etc. There are injuries to the head, arms, and legs.
- Falling Objects: When an object falls from shelves, at a high height or dropped by another worker causing a head and/or back injury. For example, in a warehouse, one worker is stocking items on a high shelf and accidentally pushes a box causing to fall off and hit another worker in the aisle on the other side.
- Bodily Reaction Injuries: When a worker reacts to a slip or fall and injures him or herself. The worker does not fall, but the jerking motion can cause muscle injuries, such as a strain or tear.
- Falling: When a worker falls from a certain height or on the same level. This type of injury is most common with construction workers. Workers fall from roofs, ladders, scaffoldings, and stairways. A worker can also fall from faulty equipment. For example, a worker can fall out of the basket of a boom or scissor lift because the latch on the gate was broken.
- Slipping & Tripping Injuries: These accidents can happen on wet floors or by tripping over an object. An auto mechanic can slip on grease that was left on the drive or in a bay. A worker can trip on a cable, tool or piece of material that was left out. They can mainly cause back and head injuries.
- Overexertion Injuries: The name of category can be misleading. Overexertion means pulling, pushing, lifting, holding, carrying, driving and throwing. They produce musculoskeletal issues, such as torn ligaments and muscle spasms.
The People Most Affected by Work Injuries
Aside from the injured worker, the family of the worker is the most affected because the loved one has been hurt (or even killed) and they must deal with the medical bills, scheduling of treatments, other costs, and wage losses.
This is a traumatic experience for both the injured worker and family; the family must put their lives on hold until their loved one has recovered. If their loved one has been permanently disabled, the family must adapt to a new lifestyle and become caregivers.
This causes a domino effect because the second group that is affected are the other employees. They could have their hours cut or wages lowered due to the higher insurance premium.
Companies that receive the services from the injured worker’s company may experience less service or products. This, in turn, may cause extra procedures to be implemented by employer potentially causing shortages and leading to increased prices for consumers, who may then choose to use another service or product.
If you have a question, need some more information or just have questions, our attorneys at Goldberg & Wolf are more than happy to help. Do not think twice about contacting us or calling today at (856) 651-1600 and we’ll be in touch with you very soon.