Ladder to Leach Pad: 5 Important Facts About On-the-Job Injuries
Every job has its risks. A fall from a short or tall ladder can leave you disabled. A fault in a leach pad can leave you dead. Every worker has rights when injured on the job, and every employer owes some accountability. But, frequently, it takes a construction injury lawyer to stand with you.
Here are 5 important facts about on-the-jobs injuries:
- Report injury ASAP: Workplace injuries are not limited to crushing traumatic injuries. Business Insider summarized The Bureau of Labor Statistics report, “the most common injuries requiring days off were sprains, strains, and tears (accounting for 38 percent), the most common source of those was ‘overexertion in lifting or lowering’ and by far the most common thing injured was the back.”
There are slip and falls, cumulative stress injuries, and short- and long-term diseases. There are irritations of the eyes, ears, and skin, and there are many more work-related conditions. But, you have an obligation to yourself and the employer to report the injury as soon as possible.
- Get a report: The Supervisor must prepare an accident report. Complying quickly is important to the employer, required by OSHA, and valuable to you. Accident reports are standard, usually provided by the Workers’ Compensation insurance company, and readily available to the Supervisor, in the Human Resources office, or online at some businesses.
Your report doesn’t have to be on the company form. You can write a letter reporting details of the accident and injury. Sign and date the letter, and keep a copy for your records. It holds up better if you can get the Supervisor to sign that it has been received.
- See the doctor: It’s your decision to seek treatment. Employees pay nothing for Workers’ Compensation insurance, so the company may try to resist frivolous claims. But, the doctor is obliged to treat you in the context of the existing insurance program.
In most cases, employees benefit from the doctor’s diagnosis and prognosis. You should comply with the doctor’s directions. If you do not, the employer may claim that you have not cooperated in your own care. If you do and the doctor restricts your work, you and the company must comply with those restrictions. You have the right to return to your work, and the employer is obliged to accommodate your needs where possible and reasonable.
- Alternative care: If the doctor’s treatment isn’t working for you, you have the right to petition for care by another practitioner. (Some jurisdictions permit this option from the start.)
That means you can also seek effective treatment from physical therapists, psychological counseling, or massage, acupuncture, and chiropractic practitioners.
- Right to Compensation: After a defined waiting period (e.g., 3-days), your pay must resume despite lost time. If the company fails to comply or fails to honor your claim, you have the right to pursue your own interest in state industrial court. And, you may appeal that court’s decision if not satisfied.
And, you are assured the right to representation by a qualified lawyer at all steps in the process to make your loss whole.
Ladder to Leach Pad
The Industrial Safety & Hygiene News gathered some statistics on construction industry injuries.
- One in ten construction workers are injured every year.
- Falls are the greatest cause of fatal construction injuries.
- The job with the highest injury rates in the construction industry is ironwork.
- Construction workers account for y% of reported lead poisoning in the United States.
In doing so, they clarify why it is your employee right and necessity to seek representation by a qualified construction injury lawyer.