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Common Workplace Accidents and Injuries 

March 30, 2021
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Workplace accidents and injuries are more common than you may realize.   A news release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates that in 2019, workers in the private industry suffered 2.8 million non-fatal workplace injuries and illnesses. While accidents occur more often in certain industries like construction, agriculture, and manufacturing, workplace accidents are prevalent across all industries. At Bogaards Law, we believe employers should never compromise on safety standards. We also believe that when a worker is injured on the job, they should be fairly compensated, and our workplace injury attorneys are ready to help. 

Common Workplace Accidents

When safety protocols are not followed or enforced in the workplace, serious injuries and even death may result. Some common workplace injuries are as follows:

Falls from Heights

Falls are common in certain industries, like construction, accounting for hundreds of deaths every year. When an employee is working several feet above the ground, failure to provide safety equipment like harnesses, scaffolds, ladders, etc., can lead to severe injuries, permanent disability, and even death. It is not enough to provide safety equipment. Employees must also be trained to use them properly. If you are an employee, insist on having the proper equipment before climbing a height. 

Exposure to Heat

Employees who work outdoors in extreme weather conditions – for example, in construction, agriculture, mail delivery, etc. –  are more susceptible to dangers resulting from heat exposure.  Employers are required by law to provide water, rest, and shade to employees who work in hot weather. Employers are also required to monitor employees for signs of illness like confusion, nausea, or rapid breathing. When an employer fails to follow these safety measures, employees may suffer from dehydration, heatstroke, and other adverse health effects which may lead to death. Untreated heatstroke, for example, can lead to damage to vital organs in the body and cause death. 

Exposure to Hazardous substances

Exposure to unsafe substances can lead to skin irritation, cancer, burns, respiratory problems, and even death. Employers are required to train employees on the safe handling of toxic substances, label toxic substances properly, and keep appropriate records. If you believe you have been exposed to toxic substances in the workplace and you experience symptoms suggesting you are having a medical emergency, call 911 immediately, as acting fast may prevent permanent damages to your body. 

Slips and Trips

According to the Department of Industrial Relations, in 2019 alone, slips and trips in the workplace accounted for 88 deaths in California. Slips and trips often occur as a result of spills on floors, littered objects, and loose or unsecured items. To prevent this type of hazard, clean wet surfaces immediately after a spill and display signs warning others of the wet surface. Also, ensure workplaces are properly lit.  When these preventive measures are not taken, a fall can occur that results in injuries including bruises, dislocation of joints, fractures, and even death. 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Repetitive hand motions, like typing, sewing, packaging, can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. Weakness, tingling, and numbness are likely symptoms. Maintaining good posture and taking frequent breaks are some ways to avert the effects of carpal tunnel syndrome.  

Contacts by Moving Objects

Some occupations, such as construction or farming, involve working around moving equipment. To prevent injury resulting from a collision with moving equipment, only trained personnel should operate such equipment. Moving equipment should also be frequently serviced and maintained to prevent malfunction. Failure to do so may result in workplace injuries and fatalities. 

Fires and Explosions

Fires and explosions can occur as a result of ill-maintained gas lines, electrical connections, and improper handling of hazardous substances. Ensuring proper maintenance and storage of this equipment and substances will reduce workplace fires and explosions. 

Contact a Bay Area Workplace Injury Lawyer for Help

If you believe you have suffered an injury in the workplace, you may be entitled to compensation and benefits. Contact our legal team at Bogaards Law today and schedule an appointment.  

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