When an employee suffers a workplace injury of virtually any sort, they should be able to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. To this end, workers’ compensation is a broad category that can discuss countless types of workplace accidents and injuries. For this blog entry, though, we will be taking a look at five of the most common reasons why workers’ compensation claims are filed in the United States, in no particular order other than that they are quite common in all regions and across various industries.
Slip & Fall Injuries
In most industries and workplaces, there can be slip or trip hazards when safety measures are inadequate. From a retail worker slipping on a spilled product to an office worker tripping over some loose computer cabling, the potential need for filing a slip-and-fall workers’ comp claim is always high. This is especially true in regions with heavy rainy seasons, which can cause slip hazards at entrances and exits. Falls from heights or off scaffolding are also among the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) “Fatal Four” causes of construction accidents.
Material Handling Accidents
Dangerous, hazardous, or toxic materials are among some of the most common hazards in the industrial sector. All employees need to know how to properly handle such materials, even if doing so is not directly in their job description. When an employee encounters a dangerous substance, like an industrial cleaner, but does not know how to use and store it, the likelihood of a material handling accident increases.
Machinery & Heavy Equipment Accidents
Working with heavy machinery and industrial equipment inherently has its risks, which are only compounded when workers are not given proper safety instructions or protective gear. Some employers are guilty of trying to save costs by making workers share protective gear, rather than supplying enough for everyone on the jobsite. It might be no surprise that machinery and heavy equipment accidents are one of the most common incidents cited on workers’ comp claims.
Repetitive Strain Injuries
A repetitive strain or stress injury (RSI) is an injury that gradually happens over time as the worker continues to do the same activity again and again. For example, carpal tunnel syndrome is a common RSI that afflicts many office workers who must use a mouse and keyboard for 40+ hours a week. Although arguably less severe than other types of physical injuries, RSIs are still frequently intense enough to cause debilitation and warrant workers’ comp benefits.
When an employee is urged to rush, take shortcuts, or “burn the midnight oil,” dangerous overexertion can occur. Overexertion can take many forms, including pulling a muscle, dislocating a joint, dehydration, and heatstroke. Employers must pay attention to the health of their employees and discourage intentional overexertion while also providing ways to prevent it, such as placing hydration stations around the workplace.
Alvandi Law Group, P.C. in Orange County can help you file, manage, or appeal a workers’ compensation claim, regardless of why your workplace injury happened. Call (800) 980-6905 for details about our legal services and your options as an injured worker in California.