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What are the Different Types of Injured Workers?

Injured employees miss days or even weeks of work and require time, compensation, and assistance with work-related accidents. There are state and federal systems in place that provide compensation for a range of workers. A victim should reach out to a Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation lawyer who can help recover the appropriate compensation based on state and federal law. Owing to the unique circumstances facing certain industries, employees must understand how their situations are different. Moreover, injured workers must report any accidents or injuries quickly so that they can receive the medical and wage compensation they are due.

What Types of Injuries can Health Care Workers Suffer?

Health care workers handle sensitive, sharp, or dangerous tools and materials all day. A nurse can be stuck by a needle, or a doctor can be cut with a sharp instrument. Hospitals and medical clinics must remain as clean as possible, but slip and fall accidents are still common. A hospital or medical worker could be assaulted by an angry patient or family member, or they might be run over by a crash cart or stretcher in a rush to offer emergency care.

The use of delicate and potentially toxic gases or substances can cause burns, hearing loss, or visual impairment. Medical personnel up to and including orderlies could be exposed to diseases while at work. As health care workers come down with these diseases, their medical care is compensable.

Are Retail Associates Eligible for Workers’ Compensation?

Retail associates work on slippery tile floors and often deal with spills. If a retail worker goes into a stockroom or attempts to retrieve items from a high shelf, they could suffer injuries after these items fall. Even if the employee can climb a ladder to access these items, they could fall off the ladder or trip.

Retail associates also suffer relatively minor injuries on the job, including sprained fingers, wrist injuries, repetitive stress injuries, and leg injuries. Employee should report every injury no matter how minor it seems. These injuries can progress in severity, and employees who attempt to work through these injuries may find themselves unable to work at all.

Are Food Service Worker Injuries Compensable?

Those working in food service deal with hot oil, sharp objects, and hot surfaces throughout the day. Injuries can occur at any time, but these workers often believe their injuries are part of the job. This is not true, and workers should report their injuries so that they can receive compensation.

Severe cuts and lacerations are common in working kitchens, and severe burns from steam, hot water, and hot oil require medical treatment. Eye injuries are also common because these workers may have fluid splash in their faces.

Because the floor in a working kitchen can be slick, workers might slip and fall. Knee and leg injuries are common even if the victim does not hit the ground. Line cooks might suffer from back injuries if they are standing in the same spot for several hours a day. These very same employees may lift heavy supplies every day, causing further irritation of existing back injuries or ailments.

Repetitive stress injuries are also common, as workers complete the same tasks over and over throughout each shift. These injuries are compensable even if they are minor. Someone who spends years working in a kitchen might also inhale smoke, steam, and other substances that cause occupational asthma.

The servers and hosts in these establishments are equally susceptible to injury as they walk across slick floors; slip on spilled beverages; or trip over broken tiles, crinkled floor mats, or tables and chairs. Servers and bartenders could also suffer from severe lacerations when dealing with broken glass. Anything that shatters on the floor must be cleaned as soon as possible, and the person cleaning up the mess could be injured even if they pick up a single shard of glass.

Are Injuries Common in Offices?

Office workers are susceptible to injuries because they work in tight spaces and a fast-paced environment. These workers may not realize that they are at risk, and they should be more careful when they enter the office.

Office workers might trip, slip, or fall throughout the space. Although these falls may seem benign, someone tripping over carpet or tile can break bones, suffer ligament damage, or experience severe head injuries. Moreover, these workers may strike other objects as they trip and fall.

The corners of desks are especially dangerous when office workers fall or try to cut through the area as quickly as possible. Office workers might cut themselves while preparing documents or dealing with packages and supplies. Some offices are very crowded, and boxes or supplies might sit on the floor for days or even weeks at a time. It is easy for workers to trip over these packages or simply bang into them and suffer broken toes, severe bruising, or cuts and scrapes.

Office workers also encounter electricity throughout the day as they deal with printers, copiers, and other equipment. Even a slight electric shock can cause a compensable injury, and it is important that victims report these injuries to their supervisors as soon as possible. An office worker may not ever think that they could be hurt at work, but they must understand how to proceed when injuries occur.

What are the Dangers Associated with Working in Pharmaceutical Laboratories?

Working in a pharmaceutical laboratory is an exciting job that allows researchers and assistants to study medications that can cure people the world over. Although these facilities are often kept perfectly sterile, it is impossible for pharmaceutical companies to avoid every potential accident.

Workers could slip on wet floors, bang their heads on tables or hanging lights, or suffer from the strain of repetitive stress injuries. These positions also involve the use of sharp objects or glass. Cuts and scrapes are possible, and exposure to toxic chemicals could occur as technicians complete experiments.

In a production facility, workers are exposed to the base materials that make up medications. Although these substances combine to make life-saving products, they are often toxic or dangerous in their native state. Spills, fires, and explosions are possible as these materials remain in storage or succumb to the extreme heat and pressure required to create capsules or tablets.

Are Injuries Common Among Technology Workers?

Technology workers face more hazards than the public knows. For the most part, a technology worker can focus on their computer or workstation, but there are those who deal with IT support and hardware throughout the day. For example, someone who manages servers every day could slip and fall while walking through a massive server room. These workers might also suffer repetitive stress injuries because they are typing or coding constantly.

Cuts and scrapes are common because workers are handling metal objects, reaching into computers, or even piecing devices back together. Repair technicians could be cut or poked by their tools, or they might experience severe eye strain because they must stare at a screen all day.

Aside from these common issues, IT workers might also suffer from back strains and neck injuries because they must sit all day and crane their necks to see their screens. Traveling IT workers might be involved in car accidents, or they might suffer from severe leg or back injuries while lifting massive boxes filled with parts or devices.

Are Factory Employees Susceptible to Injuries?

The close quarters, large machines, and potentially toxic substances used in factories can make the manufacturing sector a dangerous place to work. Although factory workers use protective suits or footwear, they may suffer burns if there are fires or unexpected steam releases. Chemical burns can also occur while handling corrosive or acidic substances.

If a machine malfunctions, workers can be injured or even caught in the device. Certain manufacturing processes require raw materials to travel overhead or balance on fast-moving conveyor belts. These objects can fall from heights at any time, or they might splash when reaching machines that use liquid during production.

Slip and fall incidents are common because cement or concrete floors become slick, whether they are coated in powder, water, or other fluids. During rain or snowstorms, water easily tracks inside the building, and roof leaks might leave puddles that employees do not see.

Bright lights and loud noises also cause work injuries. Although the victim may not notice the severity of their symptoms in the moment, they might experience headaches, nausea, disorientation, or temporary hearing or vision loss. While victims may wear goggles or earplugs, major accidents can cause damage or injuries.

Can Fleet Drivers Become Injured on the Job?

Fleet drivers may be involved in accidents in regions across the United States, and their injuries are compensable as long as they are driving for work. If truck drivers or fleet drivers are injured while loading or unloading their vehicles, their injuries are compensable. The driver might be injured when a routine air brake test blows debris in their face. Even though the driver may be far from their home base, they should report their injuries as soon as possible. Drivers may not want to stop their routes for the day or cancel deliveries, but they require immediate medical attention. If a fleet driver offers services in a customer’s home or business, their injuries are compensable. Common occupations in this category include plumbers, HVAC technicians, and electricians.

Are Public Transportation Workers at Risk for Injuries?

Bus drivers may be injured in accidents with other vehicles, or they could be hurt while helping passengers on or off the bus. The same is true of train workers who operate these vehicles, work with passengers, or assist with loading or unloading. Public transportation workers repair the rails and stations or platforms, leaving them at risk for further injuries or incidents involving large vehicles.

Platform workers could slip and fall on the platform because of rain, ice, or snow. Some platforms are not maintained properly, or employees might trip because of the gap between the vehicle and the platform or curb. Workers might also suffer injuries during repairs or fall victim to faulty tools, materials, or vehicles. For example, a bus repair technician could be injured when the hydraulics on a bus malfunction. Workers in the ticket offices, at the turnstiles, or at monitoring platforms can suffer from repetitive stress injuries, slip and fall injuries, or even assaults. Because of the tense nature of boarding times, schedules, and passengers expecting to arrive at their destinations, physical violence can occur.

What Common Accidents Occur in Warehouses?

Warehouse employees spend their days working with forklifts, heavy palettes, and objects stored on high shelves. These workers must enter and exit the building constantly, making it easy to slip and fall at any point. Warehouse employees who load and unload trucks can be caught between two parcels or be crushed when these parcels fall. The same is true if employees are stuck behind cargo trucks as they enter the dock.

Lacerations occur as workers quickly cut open packages. The potential for clutter is very high, and workers might trip over items left on the floor. Even if items extend only a few inches from their position on the shelves, an unsuspecting employee could trip and suffer serious injuries. Vehicle accidents also occur on large properties as trucks, forklifts, four-wheelers, and other vehicles traverse the site. Even a minor truck accident can cause whiplash, soreness, or a concussion.

What Threats Do Construction Workers Face on the Job?

Construction workers face several dangers on the job. Working in any construction zone leaves employees vulnerable to exposure to toxic substances. Chemicals and gases used on the worksite may release in small quantities throughout a long project, but the sum of the victim’s exposure can lead to severe injuries or illnesses.

Fires and explosions occur from to a range of factors. Electrical sparks can ignite materials, gases under pressure might explode, or toxic chemicals may catch fire because of high temperatures. Additionally, vehicles on a worksite may contribute to fires and explosions. Construction vehicles carrying substances must be maintained properly to avoid hazardous situations, and vehicles should not be parked near heat sources or gathering areas. Drivers must be aware of their location relative to large structures, people, other vehicles, and potentially hazardous materials.

Slip and fall incidents on construction sites may occur on wet ground or while walking through unfinished buildings. For example, someone walking over unfinished subflooring could trip on the floor joists. Construction workers on scaffolding or working at great heights could fall while walking or performing a task. Machines and tools used during the construction process might malfunction, fall, or cause electrocutions. Common issues with machines on construction sites include the following:

Crane accidents. These accidents occur because cranes are not balanced properly, carry loads heavier than they can manage, or tip over because of extreme winds or heavy rains. Crane cables might snap, allowing large objects to fall several stories to the ground. Bystanders and construction workers can be injured during these accidents, or the operator might be injured as they are trapped inside the cockpit while the machine falls.

Nail gun accidents. Accidents with nail guns involve the force of an air-powered or pneumatic nail gun and dangerous nails flying through the air. Workers should be aware of who is around them and keep their fingers off the trigger until they are ready to work. Workers should never complete a nail gun job with someone just on the other side of the work area and ensure that the nail gun is powered properly.

Frayed wires increase the risk of electrocution, or those wires might touch standing water near unsuspecting workers. Moreover, compressed gas used to power these devices could explode under high heat or after the canister is damaged.

Trench collapses. These incidents occur when workers must go below ground to build the foundation of a structure or create service tunnels. Trench collapses might also occur when workers pull up sewer pipes or water lines. Workers tasked with burying electrical cables or digging trenches for drainage may also experience collapses if they must climb into the trench. In severe cases, construction workers could drown when trenches collapse and rapidly fill with water.

What Should I Do if I am Injured While Completing Road Construction?

Road construction crews are at higher risk because they are in the roadway or on the shoulder. Construction workers in these settings must be aware of traffic that passes through the area, and they must also contend with the massive machines and toxic materials used to build or repair roads.

Issues on a road construction site include vehicle accidents as large trucks enter and exit the area throughout the day. Motorists are driving past at high speeds, and water that runs off from road building or slick pavement can cause falls. When large paving or demolition machines malfunction, workers could be injured.

Additionally, road construction crews may use industrial gases or chemicals that sit in the sun throughout the day. These gases or chemicals could explode because of excessive sunlight exposure, or these substances could catch fire, often burning unnoticed until an unsuspecting worker discovers them.

Exposed work sites also use external power sources or hanging power lines that could cause electrocutions. Bright lights used during nighttime construction could burn anyone who touches them, and flying debris kicked up by passing vehicles could cause a range of injuries from cuts and bruises to head injuries, eye injuries, or even dental injuries.

Can First Responders Collect Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

First responders include law enforcement officials, firefighters, EMTs, and other disaster recovery personnel. These employees can be hurt on the job at any time. Firefighters risk injury while fighting even the smallest fires, and EMTs often enter hostile or unpleasant environments to help those in need of medical care. For example, an EMT may need to sit in the roadway with a car accident victim while trying to stabilize them. Other cars are passing through, and a police officer redirecting motorists or orange cones that divert traffic cannot completely prevent further accidents or injuries.

Law enforcement officers might be injured while performing a routine traffic stop. If the driver pulls away and strikes the officer with their vehicle, all related injuries are compensable. The officer might place a suspect under arrest and suffer an injury while checking the suspect’s pockets.

What Types of Compensation are Injured Workers Eligible to Receive?

Compensation after a workplace accident comes after the victim takes steps to report the accident and receive the appropriate medical care. Workers must report their injuries to their supervisors as soon as possible. The supervisor is supposed to file a claim with the insurance department or reach out to the carrier personally. Workers’ Compensation benefits do not begin until the victim completes the mandatory waiting period.

When Should an Injured Worker Retain a Lawyer?

Injured employees can hire a lawyer any time they believe their Workers’ Compensation is not paid properly or if they have difficulty reaching a settlement with the insurance company. Because Workers’ Compensation laws prevent employees from suing their employers, lawsuits resulting from accidents or injuries must target negligent third parties.

A lawyer should be hired when a faulty tool, defective vehicle, or other form of misconduct causes injuries or death. While a lawyer works to reach a settlement or forces the insurance company to pay a claim, they can collect evidence for concurrent third-party lawsuits. For example, if a truck manufacturer knew it was using faulty parts, they are liable for resulting accidents. A lawyer attends all hearings, files appeals, and continues working the case until the victim obtains a favorable outcome. The same is true if the grieving family of a deceased worker must come forward to retrieve compensation.

Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen, LLC Serve Injured Employees Across a Range of Industries

If you work in one of the above fields and have been injured on the job, reach out to the Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen, LLC for help building a case and recovering compensation. We fight vigorously for the rights of our clients after they have been hurt at work. Call us at 856-751-7676 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Mount Laurel, Cherry Hill, Trenton, and Vineland, New Jersey; as well as Trevose, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

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