Warehouses generally store large inventories and heavy machinery, plus utilize every bit of cubic square footage, making for very great heights and other dangers. Furthermore, warehouse workers usually have a more rigorous workload involving specialized duties that pose several hazards of their own.
More than many other industries out there, warehouse work presents a higher frequency of accidents and injuries. If you are a warehouse worker, it is important to ensure you are protecting yourself on the job as much as you can. Your employer and other employers and their employees should also be seeking to make the premises and job as safe as possible for all people who work in the warehouse.
Continue reading to learn more about these common warehouse accidents and how to get legal help understanding your workers’ comp benefits as an injured warehouse employee in Indiana.
Third-Party Liability For Warehouses Accidents
Because there are usually more than one employer and their employees working at a warehouse, sometimes an injury is caused by someone other than a co-employee. If this occurs, the employer or third-party can also possibly be held liable for the injuries caused, if they were caused by negligence. It is vitally important to have the facts on exactly how your injury occurred reviewed by an attorney to determine if you have a third-party case, in addition to a worker compensation case, as what you can recover for damages can be different and more substantial if you also have a third-party case.
Common Workplace Accidents in Warehouses
Some of the most common accidents that happen to warehouse workers and staff include slip and fall accidents, forklift accidents, loading dock accidents, and even overexertion. Fortunately, these accidents and more should be covered by your workers compensation benefits.
Slip and Fall Accidents
The Department of Labor suggests that the number one cause of warehouse injuries is due to slip, trip, and fall accidents. This includes fall accidents from great heights, such as scaffolding, elevators, or stairwells. The Department of Labor reports that slip and fall accidents make up for 25% of workplace warehouse accident claims and 15% of workplace fatalities. They also estimate that 95 million working days are lost because of slip and fall warehouse accidents.
Most warehouses require forklifts and similar types of machinery to move and organize their heavy palettes and boxes of inventory. Forklifts are large and motorized construction vehicles that can only be operated by those who are properly certified. But even with proper qualifications and training, workplace forklift accidents happen all the time. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, approximately 35,000 serious forklift accidents occur annually in warehouses all across the country. Of all the warehouse fatalities that are reported each year, nearly 16% are a result of forklifts.
Loading Dock Accidents
Aside from unsafe surfaces, great heights, and motorized machinery, loading docks are another common workplace hazard. Dockworkers have reported injuries from slipping, falling, getting pinned between objects, large objects falling on top of them, or being injured by a forklift or other kind of motorized warehouse equipment.
Although not typically recognized as a type of workplace risk or injury, overexertion is a common type of physical suffering experienced by warehouse workers across the nation. Warehouse work is normally heavy-duty labor, involving lifting, pushing, pulling, twisting, building, and all sorts of repetitive movements.
Additionally, warehouse workers tend to keep very long hours, with an average of 10 to 12 hours a day. As a result of all this hard and repetitive labor, certain areas of the body can take on significant stress, including backs, necks, shoulders, elbows, knees, wrists, and joints. Overexertion injuries are typically covered by workers compensation benefits.
Are you an injured warehouse worker in Indiana who needs help understanding your workers’ compensation benefits? Contact the Law Office of Craven, Hoover, and Blazek P.C. at 317-881-2700 to schedule a free case evaluation regarding your Indiana workplace injury, today. We serve clients all throughout the state. Again, if you were injured at work and the incident was the fault of anyone other than a co-employee, you would also have a third-party claim so it is important to contact an attorney right away.