Common Workplace Accidents and Injuries that can Result in Workers’ Compensation Claims in California
The average California worker is exposed to a wide range of different accidents and injuries. The worst accidents are capable of taking people’s lives, and this just is not acceptable in a nation like America. People should have the confidence to put food on the table without putting their lives at risk. Unfortunately, many California workers end up suffering permanent, life-threatening injuries that make it impossible to earn an income for months or even years as they heal. Some may never work again after workplace injuries. But what are some of the most common injuries in California workplaces, and how can you get compensation for these injuries? Let’s find out:
Repetitive Stress Injuries (RSIs) – Although they might not seem as serious as many other workplace ailments, repetitive stress injuries are extremely common in California. Also known simply as “RSIs,” repetitive strain injuries may occur after many months or years of repetitive bending, stretching, reaching, and other similar tasks. At particular risk are workers who complete high-accuracy jobs with their hands, such as typists, hairdressers, assembly line workers, and warehouse workers.
Recently, Amazon has come under fire for its warehouse worker policies – which federal workers recently deemed unsafe after an investigation. Specifically, the investigation found that workers in Amazon warehouses – including those in California – were at high risk of developing RSIs. Examples of RSIs include tendonitis, degenerative arthritis, fascitis, and many others. These issues can affect people of all ages and potentially cause disabilities that prevent workers from earning income.
Falls – Perhaps the greatest threat for workers is a fall. These may occur in many forms – the most serious being falls from heights. These falls – commonly experienced in construction sites or on residential roofs – have the power to take lives. Often, these accidents occur due to lackluster training, the lack of safety equipment, not enough supervision, or a combination of many factors. These falls are almost always preventable, but they occur at an alarming rate throughout many industries in California.
With all that said, a fall does not have to be a tumble from a 30-story building in order to be dangerous. Workers can suffer serious injuries from simply slipping on a wet floor. In some cases, these injuries can be fatal. Elderly workers are especially at risk, and they may suffer broken hips as a result of even a slight tumble. Other potential injuries include concussions, TBIs (traumatic brain injuries), wrist fractures, ankle strains and sprains, broken fingers, and much more. A hip fracture can easily become fatal for elderly workers if the injury becomes infected.
Toxic Exposure – Workers in California are often exposed to toxic chemicals – sometimes without even being aware of them. The obvious example is asbestos, which was used as a construction material for many years until its toxic nature was made public. By this point, it was too late to save countless construction workers and other employees who had come into contact with this material on a daily basis. These individuals had inhaled very small fibers into their lungs, which slowly caused serious conditions like mesothelioma and lung cancer.
Today, workers continue to be exposed to a wide range of additional toxins and dangerous substances. Often, workers only find out how dangerous these materials are many years after they finish working for a particular company. In fact, many workers only find out that they were handling dangerous substances because they receive shocking medical diagnoses.
It is important to understand that you can still file a workers’ comp claim after developing medical issues from coming into contact with dangerous substances – even if decades have passed. This is because you have one year to file a workers’ comp claim after you become aware of your injuries – not necessarily when the initial exposure first occurred.
Fires and Explosions – Fires and explosions have the highest casualty rates of any workplace accident in California. While safety policies are strictly mandated across workplaces in California, sometimes fires simply get out of control. Small, confined spaces are especially at risk. There have been instances of entire factories catching fire, causing many workers to be trapped within. Explosions pose obvious risks, and many workers are tasked with processing or transporting highly flammable or explosive items. Even if workers survive these explosions, they are often left with catastrophic, disfiguring injuries that change their lives forever.
Overexertion – Like RSIs, overexertion is one of the most underestimated causes of injury in California. In some cases, it can even cause death. California has a booming agricultural industry, and many farm workers find themselves spending long hours in the baking sun. If these workers are not provided with access to shade or water, overexertion can easily occur. Sometimes, this can be fatal. Workers are often encouraged to work long hours with few breaks by their managers or bosses. Sometimes, workers are driven to the point of exhaustion, and there are many accounts of employees fainting or collapsing at work. This is unacceptable, and workers who experience this terrible treatment deserve to seek compensation.
Struck by Objects – Workers may also be struck by falling objects, moving equipment, or even other workers while on the job. These accidents account for some of the worst injuries in California workplaces, as falling objects can easily cause life-altering and catastrophic head injuries. Another common example is a piece of heavy equipment, such as an excavator or a forklift, moving across a workplace and striking an employee.
Where Can I Find a Qualified Workers’ Comp Attorney in California?
If you have been searching for a qualified, experienced workers’ comp attorney in California, look no further than Los Angeles Workers’ Comp Attorney. Over the years, we have helped numerous injured victims strive for compensation. We know that all kinds of injuries and accidents may occur in the average California workplace. Even if you are not working in a high-risk environment, there is no telling what might happen. If you have suffered any injury while working, you need to contact us as soon as possible. There are strict deadlines when it comes to filing a workers’ compensation claim and reporting your injury, so book your consultation today for the best results.