Lifting heavy objects at work in Florida and elsewhere accounts for one of the largest causes of back injuries among workers each year. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that one in five of all work injuries are back injuries. Each work injury raises the possibility that a workers’ compensation claim will be filed by the injured worker should he/she need medical treatment, medications or other doctor and hospital services.
If the worker is also disabled on a temporary or permanent basis, lost wages benefits must be paid. Due to the enormous financial cost complained of by workers’ compensation insurers, the system becomes burdened with a large number of contested workers’ comp cases. In those cases, the worker must fight vigorously for the initiation, restoration and/or maintaining of benefits.
Whenever a dispute arises concerning a lifting accident at work, the injured worker must report the event immediately and follow all employer-published protocols for processing a claim. Usually, benefits will be initiated timely if the reporting requirements are met. Whenever a medical issue arises regarding the worker’s right to collect lost wages benefits, the worker’s strongest protective move is to obtain a consultation with a workers’ compensation attorney.
Prior to an accident occurring, there are safety measures for workers and employers to keep in mind. One of those is to never try and lift more than the worker can realistically handle. It is safest in any event for lif1ting of machines and heavy objects to do it in pairs. This helps to avoid accidents and cuts down on worker fatigue.
The employer should provide loading docks where appropriate. Injury numbers can be reduced by having mechanical equipment available that assists in the lifting procedure. Training seminars and talks by medical experts regarding how to lift safely can be a good help to workers. Lifting accidents leading to serious back injuries are increasing in Florida and elsewhere. Whenever a worker faces an issue over the receiving of workers’ compensation benefits, it is best not to act or speak for oneself; consulting immediately with a workers’ compensation attorney will keep the worker on equal footing with the resources of the employer and its compensation insurance carrier.
Source: rentalpulse.com, “Safety Tip: Safe lifting can be a unique challenge in employee safety“, Oct. 28, 2017