Injuries are no laughing matter, and when they happen at the workplace, they can sideline you for weeks or months depending on the severity. The worse an injury is, the more time you will likely need to recover; in that time, you may be wholly unable to go to work. You should not wait until you have already suffered an injury before you learn about workplace accidents. Knowledge is power, and the more you know about common trends in workplace incidents, the better prepared you will be with each passing day.
Here are a few things you need to know about workplace injuries.
In many accidents, the lack of communication between individuals can be blamed as the cause. Workers who had misgivings did not bring up these issues to their supervisors or managers, while others who were hesitant about completing a duty did not inform their coworkers. It is not uncommon for workers to carry out a task despite not feeling comfortable doing so. If there is communication, the problem can usually be solved with the help of a few different people, and an accident would be avoided. Without communication, employees will have a hard time completing their day to day job duties
You should make it a point to double check with people about anything you feel hesitant about doing.
Be Aware of Falls
Falls are the most common cause of workplace injuries and deaths, accounting for nearly 40% of employee fatalities in 2016, as per the OSHA website. Falls can happen anywhere and anytime â€“ it does not take a lot for a person to fall, merely a loose piece of fabric on a rug or a small we spot on the ground. These falls often take the victim by surprise, and as a result, there may be no time to break the fall.
In some cases, the falls happen near equipment or excess merchandise. Still others happen due to an unreported problem with a staircase or a corridor. As a worker, you should make it a duty to report any issues you find before they become sources for accidents.
Do not fall victim to a trip or slip. You can quickly lose everything if the accident is severe enough.
Construction and Injuries
Construction workers have some of the most dangerous jobs in the country, data which is supported by the OSHA. Even though police officers and firefighters may face more apparent risks, construction workers enter job sites each day surrounded by extremely deadly equipment and low levels of safety. It is not uncommon for construction workers to be struck by falling objects, fall in trenches, or be crushed or harmed by equipment.
These workers need to do everything they can to prevent injury, whether that is undergoing additional training or implementing more safety measures. For all employees, you must not be afraid to voice your opinion if you feel something is dangerous or if there needs to be higher standards of safety and more hands on training.
You should keep in mind that construction, public service positions, and other similar careers are not the only ones that have risks. Employees in every kind of company suffer injuries at work. Food service workers are usually on the receiving ends of burns, while desk workers in offices are often afflicted with carpal tunnel syndrome.
There is always the chance for injury at a job, whether it is by electrocution, violence, falling objects, falls, or occupational hazards. No job is completely safe, and you should be properly knowledgeable about procedures just in case an accident occurs.
In many states, the chance to earn worker’s compensation in the event of an injury is invaluable. There are people who suffer injuries that are not their faults, and their medical bills can be taken care of. In some states, like California, there is a no-fault system in place, which deems that you can collect worker’s compensation for an injury you sustained while at the workplace regardless of whose fault it was.
It is important that you learn more about worker’s compensation in your state, but it is also equally important that you obtain the information from your employer. The lack of a visible sign detailing worker’s compensation benefits and procedures can be an offense. You should be aware of your rights ahead of time instead of attempting to figure out what you can do after an injury already happened.
Pain and Suffering
Speaking of worker’s compensation did you know that you are generally unable to sue your for pain and suffering or noneconomic damages? The majority of cases end in award settlements for compensation of medical bills and reimbursement of lost wages. There is usually an agreement that is signed upon hire that disallows employees from suing for these damages. It is to be expected, as pain and suffering can net a fairly sizeable amount of compensation on its own.
Deaths in the Workplace
In 2016 alone, over 5,000 employees were killed n the workplace for various reasons. Many of these incidents could have been prevented by using some of the tips discussed above. It is a complete tragedy to see a worker pass away due to a job-related incident or injury.
No matter what kind of occupation you hold, whether you are a truck driver who may be at risk driving while tired or a factory worker who is in danger of developing lung problems because of the smog, you should take care of yourself and do everything in your power to stay safe.
Independent contractors do not always have the same set of rules that employees do. For example, someone who has been contracted to do construction is not an employee of the business doing the contracting, and the company cannot be held responsible for any injuries. In other cases, such as with Uber, this is not true.
Uber initially claimed that its drivers were independent contractors and the company was not liable for any accidents that occurred while the driver was on the clock. This was later changed after a law was put into effect; now, Uber carries insurance policies for its drivers that allow them to recover compensation for damages in the event of an accident. There may still be some confusion at times, however: these Uber accident lawyers claim that some Uber drivers are still curious if they can earn worker’s compensation in the event of a crash or if they have to rely on the insurance coverage from Uber. The short answer is the latter; Uber will not provide worker’s compensation benefits for its drivers.
What to Do Next
Workplace injuries are serious incidents, and the amount of information present on standards, laws, statistics, and more is near limitless. There are many outlets for information, and we recommend finding out as much as you can. It is better to be well prepared before anything happens than it is to be rushing for help in the wake of an accident.