What Are The Most Common Injuries In Workers’ Comp Cases?
Workplace injuries can happen to anyone in any industry. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports 2.9 million nonfatal on-the-job illnesses and injuries in 2016 alone. If you are injured in a workplace, Wisconsin workers’ compensation can help you receive necessary medical care and wage benefits during the recovery.
Many common injuries and illnesses can trigger a workers’ comp claim. Continue reading to learn more about Wisconsin workers’ comp and common injuries. Also, if you have questions about a workers’ comp case, please contact the Waukesha workers’ comp lawyers Gillick, Wicht, Gillick & Graf at (414) 257-2667.
Wisconsin Workers’ Compensation Overview
All Wisconsin employees who work for an employer with at least three workers are protected by the Wisconsin Workers’ Compensation Act. Companies with fewer than three employees are covered if they pay at least $500 per quarter in one year.
Most Wisconsin employees, including private and public employers, are covered under the state’s workers’ comp laws. Employees that are not covered include federal workers, as well as employees of interstate railroads. Other exceptions to the law’s workers’ comp insurance requirement are:
- Domestic servants
- Anyone whose job is not in the business, profession, trade, or occupation of the employer
- Some farm workers
Proving that your injury or illness is job-related means proving you suffered the condition during an accident or incident at work. If you suffer from an occupational disease, you may qualify for workers’ comp insurance for:
- A medical condition that was caused by your job, such as asbestosis or mesothelioma from asbestos exposure
- Diseases that are associated with an occupation
- Illnesses that happen from the employee being at a higher risk for the disease than the public
If you wait too long, your employer may contest your claim. If you have questions about whether you are covered under the Wisconsin Workers Compensation Act, contact Our Waukesha workers’ comp lawyer.
Some of the most frequent workplace injuries include:
Sprains and Strains
A sprain is a torn or stretched ligament, and a strain is a torn or stretched muscle or tendon. Falling, twisting, and pulling may lead to a strain or strain injury at work. One of the most common ways workers strain or sprain their back or other body parts is improper lifting.
Another cause of strains and sprains is incorrect ergonomics when working at a desk, assembly line, or another workplace environment that involves repetitive motions. Also, workers can strain their back or neck if they work in a way that leads to being in an awkward posture for long periods.
The spine has discs between each vertebra, and every disc has a soft center and protective coating. When the protective layer is torn, the disc center herniates and presses on spinal nerves.
This injury is common as we age but can also happen at work. Frequent workplace accidents that may herniate a disc are lifting heavy objects, slip and fall accidents, and repetitive motion. This severe back injury could take months of recovery, so seek treatment immediately.
Employers should regularly train employees to review environmental awareness and correct ergonomics to avoid herniated discs and other back injuries. For example, workers should examine the weight of a heavy object before lifting or moving it. One moment’s inattention can lead to a severe injury.
Eye and face protection is essential to safeguard against workplace chemical and environmental hazards. Therefore, your employer should regularly perform a workplace hazard assessment. They also should give safety training to every worker who needs eye and face protection.
A bruise is a contusion or mark on the skin. It is caused by blood trapped below the skin that damages tiny blood vessels but does not penetrate the skin. On the job, contusions often occur because the worker lifts a heavy object incorrectly. Bruises also happen when a worker runs into a stationary object.
Burns may happen at work from chemicals, heat, steam, electricity, radiation, or sunlight. Burn injuries often occur in restaurants, bars, manufacturing, and production facilities. Some burns also happen when employees inhale chemical fumes or smoke.
There are many types of burn injuries, depending on the industry. Therefore, your employer should hold regular safety training on avoiding thermal, electrical, chemical, and other burns.
A pinched nerve can be a debilitating on-the-job injury. They may occur in many situations. For example, repetitive hand and finger motions when using machinery can cause a pinched nerve over weeks or months.
Some pinched nerves may heal after resting for a few days, but you should get medical attention when you feel pain. If the pinched nerve is untreated, it can permanently damage the nerve.
Workers may suffer a puncture wound when handling a tool such as scissors or a knife. Nails, splintered surfaces, and glass also can cause puncture wounds. Further, working with a tool with a dull blade can cause a deep puncture wound.
A tear or deep cut in the flesh or skin is a laceration. A laceration injury can happen in almost any workplace, but they occur when the employee is hurrying to complete a job before the shift ends. They also happen when the worker’s attention strays from the task.
You may avoid lacerations by keeping your work area neat and never leaving tools and equipment in the open. In addition, companies should educate their workers about always wearing the safety gear needed for the job.
Contact Waukesha Workers’ Comp Lawyers
How would you pay the bills if you were hurt on the job? You could file a workers’ comp claim on your own. However, many injured workers do not get as much compensation as attorneys handling their claims. Our Waukesha workers’ comp lawyers can help you maximize your benefits.
We represent workers’ comp clients in Waukesha, Milwaukee, Appleton, Brookfield, Fon du Lac, Green Bay, Kenosha, Madison, Manitowoc, Menomonee Falls, New Berlin, Oshkosh, and Wisconsin Rapids. Contact Gillick, Wicht, Gillick & Graf immediately for a free workers’ comp consultation or call (414) 257-2667.