In which industry do you earn your living? Have you noticed that many people seem to think that only those working in construction, manufacturing, mining and other high-risk industries face workplace injury hazards? The truth is that workers in all sectors can suffer occupational injuries or illnesses, and although their injuries might not involve blood and fractured bones, they could be as painful and could even result in long-term or chronic health problems.
On-the-job injuries can happen to any worker in any profession at any time. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says millions of workers nationwide suffer work-related injuries or diseases every year. Fortunately, if you are a workplace injury victim in Missouri or Kansas, you will be entitled to claim workers' compensation benefits to help you cope with the unanticipated financial burden.
Common injuries prevalent in many occupations
Many types of injuries are not limited to specific industries and could affect any worker. Here are a few of the most common occupational injuries:
- Overexertion injuries: Sprains, strains or torn muscles can occur in any job in which you use excessive physical effort to lift, pull, push or turn large or heavy objects. These are said to be the most common occupational injuries, and it can happen as easily in an office as on a construction site. You can be rearranging boxes in your company's storeroom and tear a muscle, or the same thing can happen if you are a commercial truck driver who has to load and unload heavy parcels or containers without help.
- Slip-and-fall injuries: You may slip and fall if a colleague spills coffee in the office, or if there is an oil spillage on the floor of the automotive body shop where you work. Similarly, snaking electric cords on the workshop floor or random objects in the hallway can cause slip-and-fall accidents with devastating consequences. Injuries could range from something as minor as a bruised shin or elbow to traumatic brain injuries if your head struck a hard object in the fall.
- Repetitive motion injuries: While you will be susceptible to injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome if you work on a production line where your job requires you to repeat the same hand motions for hours on end, you may be just as vulnerable to repetitive motion injuries if you have to work on a computer all day long. Putting a constant strain on specific tendons and muscles while sitting at your desk can also cause chronic back and neck pain, wrist problems and impaired vision.
Some of the above injuries could develop over time, and the consequences can be life changing. If you have suffered any of these injuries -- or if you later become aware of a developing problem -- report it to your employer as soon as possible. However, proving it to be work related for the purpose of a workers' compensation benefits claim might need the support and guidance of experienced legal counsel.