According to Liberty Mutual, workplace injuries can cost U.S. companies over $1 billion each week. But what about the workers who suffer from negligence and unsafe working conditions?
Without the proper care and compensation for on-the-job injuries, workers needlessly suffer. An estimated 2.8 million non-fatal workplace injuries and accidents occur in private industries around the United States each year. This can have devastating effects on an employee’s health and their ability to provide for their family.
What are some of the most common work injuries and what should you do if you or a loved one was injured at work? Keep reading this post below to find out more information about what you can do to get the workers’ compensation benefits you need.
1. Trips, Slips, and Falls
Data from the CDC shows that 18% of non-fatal work injuries in 2020 were due to slips, trips, and falls. These types of work injuries can result in everything from sprains to broken bones.
Some causes of on-the-job injuries could include:
- slipping from wet or icy floors
- tripping or slipping in hazardous or cluttered workspaces
- falling from unstable ladders and unsafe construction sites
- tripping over tools and equipment
- tripping on uneven carpet or holes in flooring
As soon as any workplace injuries take place, you must file a proper report with the company. You should also seek out and document any medical care you receive due to slips, trips, or falls.
2. Falling Objects
Employees working in warehouses are prone to work injuries. Especially those sustained by falling objects. Falling objects can cause severe work injuries and may even result in death.
Warehouse employees work with heavy palettes and large boxes that sit on high-shelved storage units. If these boxes aren’t properly stacked and stored on the shelves, they can tip over and fall onto employees working below.
Improper lifting techniques can also cause injury from falling objects like boxes. For any items over 50 pounds, the proper lifting equipment must be provided. Lifting protocols should also be used in order to prevent these items from falling and causing injuries to one or more employees.
3. Work Injuries from Machinery Accidents
In situations where workers come into contact with large industrial pieces of machinery, work injuries can become even more common. This machinery is unpredictable and without the necessary safety precautions and training, it is sure to become an accident waiting to happen scenario.
Sharp edges can cause work injuries like deep cuts and gashes if the machine is bumped into. Moving mechanical parts can grab onto loose employee clothing and potentially pull them into the machine.
Hands, fingers, and arms that are too close to the mechanisms are also at risk of being pulled in, leading to possible limb amputation or much worse.
4. Cuts and Scrapes
Cuts and scrapes may seem like a minor work injury issue. But they are common work injuries occurring across a wide spectrum of different working environments. Employees handling box cutters can run the risk of accidentally knicking their hands while opening or breaking down boxes.
Cuts and scrapes that go untreated can lead to infection. Deep cuts may also require the use of stitches to adequately close the wound.
In food preparation environments and service industry jobs, blood from work injuries like cuts from knives can also contaminate food prep and storage areas, posing a safety risk to other employees and customers.
5. Electrocution Accidents
While you may believe that electrocution work injuries can only occur from dealing with live power lines, this is not always the case. Electrocutions can result from situations like improper wiring or plugging too many devices into an outlet.
Electrical equipment with damaged or stripped wires can also cause a hazard. Not wearing rubber-soled shoes or rubber gloves to neutralize the electric pulses when dealing with exposed wiring will cause electrical-based work injuries to occur.
All power sources should be shut off manually before attempting to handle dangerous electrical hazards is a must. If electrocution injuries do occur, seek prompt medical care immediately.
6. Overexertion and Exhaustion
Workers can experience overexertion from repetitive or strenuous working tasks. Straining the muscles, tendons, and ligaments through overexertion can cause repetitive stress injuries (RSIs) in areas like the back, knees, and shoulders. These work injuries can become debilitating over time.
Likewise, exhaustion can also cause its fair share of problems in the workplace. Not getting the proper breaks throughout the day is a violation of workers’ rights and it can also lead to a higher probability of work injuries.
When employees are too tired and overworked, they can become careless and more accident-prone. They aren’t as focused on upholding the safety protocols due to fatigue.
7. Employee Fighting
While every effort is made to ensure a peaceful and harmonious workplace environment, there are always some wild cards that could shake things up.
Toxic working environments created by a particular co-worker may result in harassment and mistreatment of others. Over time this could cause tensions to rise and ultimately lead to a fight.
Breaks and fractures of the face and hands are the most prominent types of fight-related injuries. This is followed by head injuries and possible rib damage.
Problem employees who aren’t dealt with before the instigation of a fight can cause work injuries to others through provocation. This ultimately leads to lost wages from missing work due to fight-related injuries.
8. Forklift and Other Vehicle Injuries
Forklift drivers must have the proper training and certifications in order to operate a forklift. But even then, accidents can still happen. Distractions in the workplace can cause collisions of workplace vehicles with one another or with employees walking through.
Trucks in loading docks may accidentally back into the warehouse area due to employee error. Employees who aren’t familiar with how to operate a workplace vehicle can cause work injuries from negligence or inexperience.
Proper training and supervision are crucial when operating vehicles. But if you are injured as a result of these workplace accidents, consult an experienced workers’ comp attorney for more information.
Consult Augusta Workers’ Comp Attorneys for Your Work Injuries
Work injuries are serious matters. It is crucial that you and your family receive the medical benefits and financial compensation you deserve. Or at the very least, families of cases resulting in loss of life receiving the proper representation.
The workers’ compensation lawyers at Hollington Brown LLP offer comprehensive legal services exclusively for work injuries. We are the best choice for a worker’s compensation lawyer in the Augusta, GA, area. Whether you need helping file a claim, pursuing an existing workers’ compensation claim, or re-evaluating a denied claim, we’re here for you.
Contact us today for your free workers’ comp case consultation.