At Petro Cohen, P.C., we know how prevalent workers’ compensation claims are among employees. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than three million workplace injuries and illnesses occurred in the United States throughout 2013. While the rate of injuries on the job is slightly less than previous years, the probability rate remains at 3.3 workers out of every 100.
A great number of employers take care to educate and continually train employees on workplace safety, but it is clear that employees are still at risk of having an accident that results in injury while at work.
In the State of New Jersey, workers’ compensation law is intended to protect employees from the financial and medical risks associated with getting hurt during the normal course of employment. While workers’ compensation claims may have different underlying injuries or illnesses, the mechanisms of injuries are often similar.
Here are some of the more common workers’ compensation claims.
Slips, Trips and/or Falls
Slips, trips, and falls are common in some workplace environments due to wet floors, loose electrical cords, or frayed flooring. In some cases, slips, trips, and/or falls occur just outside the workplace when walkways are covered in ice or snow. Regardless of the underlying cause, slips, trips, and/or falls can cause serious injuries to workers.
Employees who lift, pull, and/or push an object that is too heavy for them may succumb to overexertion. When muscles are stretched to the limit, or a joint is extended past its natural range of motion, overexertion can cause immediate pain and create the need for lengthy recovery.
When an employee attempts to stop himself from falling or slipping, a bodily reaction may take place. Bodily reaction injuries are those such as a sprained ankle or broken wrist that occur when trying to avoid a fall or slip accident.
Struck by an Object
In some workplace environments, objects such as inventory or supplies are kept on shelves just out of an employee’s reach. Individuals who are struck by an object, either through an attempt to retrieve it or by another employee dropping it, are at risk of suffering from an injury.
Incident on the Highway
Although most common among truck drivers, an accident on the highway can occur when employees operate a vehicle for business purposes. Incidents on the highway may include accidents due to weather, negligent drivers, or other road obstructions.
Accidents Involving Machinery
On construction sites and in factories, accidents involving machinery are common workers’ compensation claims. Injuries as a result of machinery malfunctioning or falling on an employee can range from mild to severe, and in some cases, are fatal. Serious machinery accidents have burdensome financial implications due to the high cost of ongoing medical care that is often necessary.
Repetitive motions that can cause injury on the job include typing, using a computer monitor, lifting heavy inventory or supplies, and working on an assembly line. Medical conditions such as carpal tunnel, bursitis, and tendonitis are all common among workers who perform repetitive motions each day. Injuries as a result of repetitive motion are common among workers’ compensation claims. Keep in mind that the burden lies on the employee to show that the repetitive motion meaningfully contributes to the injury.
Violence in the workplace is also a cause for workers’ compensation claims, including burglaries, shootings, and arguments that lead to violence among employees. Workplace violence may not be as common, but incidents do occur that can lead to employee injury.
Speak with a New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Today
If you have suffered any of the injuries listed above, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. While every circumstance is different, there are instances when additional compensation is due. To help you determine your rights as an employee injured on the job, contact Petro Cohen, P.C. today.