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HOUSTON WORKPLACE ACCIDENT LAWYER
Workplace injuries are incidents that involve physical injuries that happen to workers or employees while they are reporting for duty at work. These kinds of injuries could occur inside the office or any place to conduct official business.
Workplace accidents cover a variety of scenarios. For example, a truck driver is on the schedule for his route for the day. While on the road, he spots a rest stop nearby and decides to go on a quick bathroom break. Afterward, he goes back to his truck. As he climbs back to the driver’s seat, a stray part of the vehicle unhinges. And this causes the truck driver to slip and fall, injuring his back. This could be an example of a workplace injury, as the truck driver got hurt while he was on duty for his work.
WHY YOU SHOULD HIRE A WORKPLACE ACCIDENT LAWYER?
Certainly, going through the experience of a workplace accident is indeed a traumatic event. Also, aside from dealing with the trauma, you need to face realities such as physically recovering from any injuries or afflictions from the accident. And then, you also have to deal with real-world problems. Such as paying for the bills that are stacking up–whether it’s for your medical treatments or repairs.
But in reality, not everyone has enough money to be able to deal with the effects of workplace accidents without processing their claims with their insurance company. Also, another sad fact of the reality is that dealing with insurance companies can be a burden, as well. In fact, the process of reimbursing victims for their losses with your insurance can be tedious with complications.
Also, a great help with all these complications is hiring a good workplace accident attorney with enough professional experience. And you may think you don’t need one because you don’t expect to go to court. But representing you in court is not the only thing a workplace attorney can do for you.
Furthermore, one of the major actions your workplace accident attorney can do is negotiate with the insurance company. And whether it’s having discussions with your or the other driver’s insurance company, having someone knowledgeable about workplace accident law can help you get the right compensation for you. Also, having someone you can rely on to discuss legal matters lessens the additional pressure. And even minimizes the anxiety of having to deal with matters you are not familiar with.
Nonetheless, as an attorney, he or she can represent you in court, should your workplace case escalate to that. But, before that even happens, it’s better that you already hire a personal injury lawyer. And they can help you with paperwork, negotiations, and court appearances.
What are other different kinds of workplace injuries?
Another example would be the case of a factory worker who clocks in for her daily shift. She is in charge of operating heavy machinery. The machine malfunctions while she is at work, causing her arm to get caught.
Another example would be when a construction worker is at work onsite. And with the instruction to gather a heavy box of tools. And bring them to his boss, who is on the topmost floor of the construction site. The worker gathers the tools and starts climbing several flights of stairs. Midway, he drops the box and cries out in pain. Straining his back while carrying out a task given by his boss. This is another case of workplace injury.
Can you get workplace injuries while working on a desk job?
Injuries from repetitive tasks could also be quite common. These are sustaining physical injuries through repetitive use. For example, a slouching employee who is in the office all day could develop back injuries or neck strain. And this is because of looking at the computer screen for long periods of time.
While the circumstances of the four examples vary, they all share one thing. All unfortunate accidents occurred while the victims were on the job. Workplace injuries could happen anywhere, as long as the individual has been reporting for work while having those injuries.
How often do workplace injuries happen?
Workplace injuries occur quite frequently than one might think. Recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal that in the private sector, an average of 2.3 workplace injuries occurred for every 100 employees in the year 2021 alone.
There was also a reported increase in workplace injuries in the same year. In 2021, the retail trade sector was the largest industry to have reported workplace injuries, with a total of 404,700 incidents. The transportation and warehousing sector came in second, with a tallied 253,100 workplace injury cases in the same year.
The National Safety Council provides additional information. The agency reports that there was a total of 4,260,000 workplace injuries that required medical attention. Among these numbers, 4,472 of the workplace injuries resulted in death.
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do workplace injuries cause lost wages?
Indeed, workplace injuries cause individuals much pain and suffering. Aside from the obvious physical injury, victims could also experience emotional distress. They would have to worry about lost days at work, mounting medical bills, and a bevy of other concerns as a result of their accident.
Sadly, workplace injuries could be quite costly. In 2020, the National Safety Council reports that expenses that were caused by workplace injuries amounted to $163.9 billion for an entire year alone. This number takes into consideration several factors.
Lost wages and salary brought about by workplace injuries were computed to be roughly in the neighborhood of $44.8 billion. Medical expenses amounted to a total of $34.9 billion. With these figures, it was estimated that workplace injuries result in a total of $1,100 cost per worker for the entire period of the year 2020.
Do workplace injuries contribute to lost days at work?
Aside from the financial costs, victims who suffered from workplace injuries lost so many days at work. The National Safety Council reports that there were 65,000,000 days lost in 2020 as a result of workplace injuries. This figure could be much much larger, as the computation did not take into account lost time on the day that the injury took place, as well as days required to get medical treatment or consultations after the injured victim has returned for work.
Furthermore, the National Safety Council gives a glum statistic for the future. Based on the 2020 numbers, the agency reports that there could be around 50,000,000 more days lost in the coming years due to workplace injuries and fatalities.
How many workplace injuries occur each year?
The number of workplace injury incidents varies per year. Let’s take a look at data published by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. In the 2017 report, there were 2.8 incidents for every 100 full-time workers. That means roughly three injured workers for every 100. The same number remained in 2018 and 2019. There was a slight drop in the 2020 report, that there were only 2.7 workplace injury cases for every 100 full-time employees.
How employers should respond to workplace injuries?
It is important that employers act with utmost due diligence when it comes to responding to workplace injuries. Failure to do so would not only potentially worsen the victim’s injury. But this could also have terrible legal repercussions should the victim decide to file a lawsuit.
The first and obvious thing that needs to be done is to seek immediate medical attention. Call 911 for emergency assistance. If the occurrence of a workplace injury incident in your office or in the area near a hospital, bring the victim right away for treatment.
If the worker encounters an accident while working on machinery, make sure to turn off all machines and cease operations. It would also be prudent to check the rest of the machinery for defects. And even check for other issues that could possibly endanger other workers.
It would also be helpful to file an incident report to document the incident. Proper documentation might be a requirement from the insurance company. Especially when the victim files a compensation claim.
Does my workplace need to report a workplace accident?
Companies usually draft a document called “First Report of Injury or Illness.” This report could include details such as the events of the accident, pictures, or CCTV footage. And even as well as statements from co-workers or other witnesses who were present during the incident.
Employers should also be aware of the fact that they cannot suspend an employee. Or even fire an employee who reports for duty after recuperating from a workplace injury.
At the same time, the employer is responsible for making sure that the incident would not happen again in the foreseeable future. This means that the employer should take the necessary steps to avoid another injury from taking place. Such measures could include conducting regular inspections of the work areas. Or even replacing defective or worn-out machinery or vehicles. Moreover, investing in ergonomic workspaces for employees, and ensuring that workers are provided with proper safety training. And then providing equipment to aid in their daily tasks.
Can I sue my employer for a workplace injury?
If you were injured at work while conducting your responsibilities as an employee, your employer might be liable for the injuries that you sustained.
If the injuries were a result of your employer’s negligence and not because of any fault of your own, you have the right to sue your employer. And therefore file for personal injury claims.
Can I sue my workplace for an injury?
Employees who have been injured while in the line of duty are definitely well within their rights to file for damages and to seek compensation. The worker does not necessarily have to be in the office, either, if the incident occurred while on the job. As long as the physical injury was directly caused by attending to a work-related task, the employer could be held liable.
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TOP QUESTIONS |WORKPLACE ACCIDENTS
What is the most common workplace injury?
According to a National Safety Council report, exposure to harmful environments or substances was the most common workplace injury report in 2020. One example of a harmful environment would be workplaces that are at risk for exposure to contagious and infectious diseases, like COVID-19 and other airborne viruses. Exposure to electricity, radiation, extreme noise, and temperature. And even as well as air and water pressure changes could be considered harmful environments.
The second most common workplace injury was overexertion and bodily reaction. Next to it were slips, trips, and falls. Overexertion could be a result of immense physical effort such as lifting heavy loads. And this is without the aid of proper equipment.
What are examples of overexertion?
Previously, we cited an instance where a construction worker was instructed by his immediate superior to manually carry heavy tools while going up the stairs. As a result, the worker was sustaining injuries due to overexertion. The employee could sue his employer for workplace injuries in order to receive workers’ compensation benefits.
Overexertion could also be a result of doing repetitive tasks so much so that it causes strain on the body. The workplace should be a space that is conducive to employees for its day-to-day operations. And while back-breaking tasks could obviously lead to overexertion. The poor design of office spaces and requiring employees to finish too many tasks without breaks could also cause physical strain.
How could an office worker get injured at work?
Let’s go back to another situation that we mentioned above. An office worker is hunched on the computer for more than 10 hours per day. He has so many spreadsheets and reports to submit. And that he always has to leave the office way beyond the prescribed working hours just to complete all his tasks. In fact, he has so much work that he could not even go on quick five-minute breaks during the day. Staring at the computer screen for extended periods of time led him to develop neck strain. This could be another example of overexertion. But this time, it was due to doing repetitive tasks for extended periods without breaks.
What does a workplace accident lawyer do?
A good workplace accident lawyer would also help you with your work injury claim. In order to get work comp benefits, also known as workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation insurance is basically handled by your employee’s insurance company. And it would greatly benefit you if you have a good lawyer who will represent you.
There is also a chance that you could get medical benefits as well. After all, medical care and treatment for injured workers could get quite expensive.
What happens if the workplace accident is not reported?
If you are unable to take legal action within a year from the date of the incident, then you will not be able to seek compensation from your employer any longer. That is why it is of prime importance that victims of workplace injuries file for compensation right away. And that you are properly informed of the one-year statute of limitations for filing workplace injury lawsuits.
Looking for a work injury lawyer in Houston? Roxell Richards Injury Law Firm is an established law firm that has been fiercely defending clients since 2005. Need to discuss more details with our work accident lawyers?
Are you based in the Houston area? Do you know someone who has suffered from workplace injuries? Got more questions for our Houston work injury attorneys? Do you need to also file a report at the Texas Department of Insurance for workers’ compensation claims?
Get in touch with us now for a free consultation! You may reach us at our local phone number (713) 974-0388. Or you can reach us through our toll-free hotline at 1-855-GOT-INJURED.
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