Workplace injuries come in many forms. Naturally, certain professions are more prone to experience work-related injuries than others. Furthermore, we typically see a consistent pattern of injuries among specific occupations. For example, the percentage of workers who suffer from strains and contusions is higher among roofers than cashiers. On the other hand, burns and scalds tend to be more common among those employed in food service.
Nonetheless, workplace injuries are not bound to any particular location. Many are not unique to any occupational hazard. A slip and fall accident can happen to anyone practically anywhere, regardless of their professional title. Likewise, the risk of being struck by a falling object is always present, even though it is statistically unlikely.
If you’ve suffered a work-related injury, it’s important to understand that you only have a limited amount of time to take the appropriate legal actions. You must contact a workers’ comp lawyer as soon as possible and explore your legal options.
If you’ve been fortunate enough not to experience the stress of a workplace injury and would like to keep it that way, here are the most common workers’ comp injuries in Florida and how to avoid them.
Physical overexertion can result from various factors, such as performing physically challenging and repetitive tasks for prolonged periods. A factory worker on an assembly line is an example of the latter. It can also result from sitting, standing, or bending consistently in a non-ergonomic position. For example, sitting on an uneven surface that compromises your spine’s structural stability can lead to muscular strain.
To protect yourself against the potential tendon, ligament, and muscle strains, you must always maintain proper posture while performing physical activities. Additionally, regular, short stretch breaks can help improve blood flow and prevent strains and tears.
Slips, Trips, and Falls
Slips, trips, and falls can occur in any work environment. Even if you work in an office and most of your responsibilities involve a desk and a computer, you may slip on a smooth or wet surface on the way to the bathroom. The only preventive action you can take regarding slips, trips, and falls is to remain vigilant and mind your surroundings. But sometimes, the cause of a slip and fall injury may not be obvious. For example, you may fail to notice a wet floor if the room is obscure or if the light does not reflect off the surface. These are all factors that a workers’ comp lawyer will take into consideration while building a case.
Lacerations and Punctures
According to the Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation, about 5% of workers’ compensation cases cite cuts, lacerations, or punctures as the primary cause of injury. While this is a pretty straightforward concept, it’s important to remember that cuts and punctures are not exclusive to those professions that require handling knives. Such injuries are often caused by tools found in poor condition and faulty machinery. Always ensure that the tool you are using is appropriate for the task at hand and meets all reasonable expectations of safety. For example, if the guardrail on a handsaw shows even minor signs of deterioration, you should immediately ask for a replacement. Unfortunately, even if you take every necessary precaution, it is sometimes impossible to predict when a piece of equipment might fail. In such cases, you must contact a workers’ comp lawyer.
Burns, Scalds, and Heat Exposure
Although less common than the previously discussed causes of injury, burns, scalds, and other consequences of extreme heat exposure can be severe and might require a significant recovery period. If you work in an environment where you are regularly exposed to extreme heat or hot objects, always ensure that you wear all necessary safety equipment. If you don’t work in such an environment, you should still exercise caution when dealing with hot objects, even if the only place you might be exposed to them is the kitchen in the break room.
Struck or Injured by an Object
In Florida, roughly 10% of all workers’ comp cases filed in 2020 were due to workers being struck by an object. The type of injury sustained varies with each case because it is dependent upon the type of object, its mass, and the force with which it strikes the victim. These types of cases include everything from minor hand and foot injuries to incapacitating head and back injuries. Always exert the utmost caution when you are surrounded by moving machinery. It is also advisable to take note of any objects stored high above the ground and report any signs of instability. If an object strikes you and you fall as a result, you might be entitled to compensation for the latter injury, as well. You must find an experienced workers’ comp attorney to determine your available legal options.
Lyle B. Masnikoff and Associates, P.A. – Your Workers’ Comp Attorneys in Florida
If you’ve sustained any of these workplace injuries or others, you need an experienced workers’ compensation attorney by your side. Our team at Lyle B. Masnikoff and Associates, P.A. has helped countless people like yourself receive compensation for their injuries. Most importantly, there are no fees unless we win.
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