Some occupations are riskier than others. By risky, we mean that there is a greater chance of suffering an injury compared to another line of work. Those working in construction and manufacturing industries are more at risk of work-related injuries as compared to those in management and administrative jobs. The United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that on average, over 3.3 million workers in the US suffer work-related injuries annually. Nearly 5000 workers suffer fatal injuries in the workplace every year. In many of these cases, the only way for the injured employee to make sure that they can continue to receive treatment and recover the benefits they are entitled to is through South Carolina workers’ comp.
What Are the Most Common Work Injuries in South Carolina?
Some of the most common work-related injuries that lead to workers’ comp claims include:
- Overexertion: Some jobs require employees to put in long hours and do physical tasks that can be tiring and physically exhausting. These tasks could include heavy lifting, carrying, pushing, throwing and other similar activities. Overexertion is a very common cause of workplace injury, and along with other physical symptoms, it can also result in worker dissatisfaction and demotivation. Overexertion is one of the leading causes of disabling injuries.
- Struck by an Object: Some jobs require employees to work with objects, machinery, and heavy equipment. There is always a risk that a worker or workers may suffer serious injuries if they get struck by any of these objects or heavy machinery and equipment. The probability of such incidents is more prevalent in construction and manufacturing industries where workers are surrounded by heavy frames, cranes and complicated machinery and equipment.
- Falls and Slips: Often workers can sustain injuries through tripping or slipping, falling from stairs, ladders, rooftops, etc. Workers can suffer from back injuries, neck injuries, broken bones and in severe cases head injuries and injuries to internal organs.
- Crush injuries: Crush injuries are also more commonly seen on construction sites or in workplaces where employees have to use heavy machines. In many cases, crush injuries are the result of negligence or violation of workplace safety. Injuries sustained can be very serious and sometimes fatal for workers.
- Motion Injuries: Some jobs are very monotonous and require workers to perform motion tasks that are repetitive in nature. These could include work-related activities that require workers to bend or stretch for long periods of time. These types of activities can result in repetitive motion injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a medical condition that can cause workers to suffer from numbness, tingling and other symptoms in their hands, wrists, and arms. Carpal tunnel syndrome can be very painful and can have a significant impact on wrist and hand function.
- Roadway incidents: These involve workers who are either engaged in transportation work (such as truck drivers) or workers who may be engaged in work-related tasks that require them to be on the road. They are at risk of being in a collision with a car, automobile or motorcycle.
- Emotional Injuries: It is unfortunate that when it comes to work-related injuries, the law tends to focus more on physical injuries. However, some work-related injuries are more emotional or mental in nature than others. These are the result of working in a stressful or toxic workplace. Workers who consistently have to remain and work in such an environment can develop emotional issues such as depression, anxiety, and stress.
Workers’ Comp for Chester Employees
Since there are many jobs that can cause injuries to workers, the workers’ comp program was established to ensure that injured workers could receive benefits to cover medical and rehabilitation costs. This insurance program also compensates them for a portion of their lost wages if they miss a certain amount of work because of an injury. Workers’ comp insurance coverage is obtained by an employer and is a mandatory requirement in Chester, South Carolina for all employers who employ four or more workers on a regular basis. This includes full time or part-time employees.
Any employee who suffers an injury in the workplace while engaged in a work-related task or activity must report the injury to their employer as soon as possible. It is imperative to seek medical treatment immediately. The employer, in turn, is required to report the injury to their insurance company as soon as they become aware of it. Both employers and employees have to ensure they comply with these requirements as they are essential for claim approval and benefits. Any carelessness can result in loss of benefits for workers and penalties for employers.
Also, employees need to keep in mind that they can only receive benefits if the injury is work-related. Any injuries sustained due to the worker’s carelessness while engaged in a non-work related activity will not be eligible for compensation. Employers must comply with the law and should not create a workplace environment where workers are not taken care of, where safety elements are not in place, and where workers are put at risk unnecessarily.
Seek Legal Counsel from a Chester Workers’ Comp Attorney
If you have suffered a work-related injury in Chester, South Carolina and are unsure of your rights or how you should file a claim, you can contact our Chester workers’ comp attorney at Elrod Pope Law Firm immediately. Many workers are unaware of their rights and what benefits they can receive. Our SC workers’ compensation lawyers will give you information about workers’ comp in SC and will advise you on your options. We understand that suffering a work-related injury can be stressful and painful and we are here to help you focus on your recovery. Call our workers’ compensation attorneys today at 803-599-3080, and we will ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.
Thomas E. Pope is a Personal Injury, Wrongful Death, and Medical Malpractice Attorney who practices in Rock Hill, Lake Wylie, and Lancaster, SC. He graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 31 years now. Thomas E. Pope believes in protecting the injured. Learn more about his experience here.