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Common workplace accidents

The workplace accidents that you may see on the news are the ones that involve falls from great heights, loss of limbs or other catastrophic injuries. Tragic as these events are, they are only a small portion of the kinds of accidents that people suffer on the job in California and across the country.

If you recently suffered an injury at work, you are not alone. In fact, nearly three million people reported injuries or illnesses related to their jobs, according to a 2015 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Falling on the job

While some of these injuries resulted from falls from high places, one of the most frequent workplace injuries is a ground-level fall. This may happen when someone has just mopped the floor or spilled a liquid, and you slip on the wet surface. Perhaps you tripped over a hazard, such as an electrical cord.

Any fall can result in injuries, including a scrape or bruise, a broken bone, or sprained back. In the most serious cases, you may strike your head on the floor or other surface, resulting in a concussion or even traumatic brain injury. Head trauma can be serious and may affect you for the rest of your life.

Sprains and strains

If your job involves heavy lifting or repetitive motions, you risk suffering the most common type of workplace injury: overexertion. This happens when you strain or tear a muscle, ligament or tendon by pushing, pulling or lifting something with too much effort.

Another way to strain muscles - including those in your eyes, back and hands - is by performing repetitive tasks like typing or sitting in front of a computer all day. Repetitive injuries and overexertion can cause you to miss work when the pain would prevent you from doing your job well.

Preventing workplace injuries

While it is probably impossible to avoid all injuries on the job, there are some general things you can do to make it less likely you will become a victim:

  • Stay healthy. A fit body is harder to damage.
  • Follow all safety precautions. Be diligent about placing and heeding warning signs and keeping work areas orderly.
  • Use protective gear. Back braces, fall-prevention harnesses, ergonomic chairs and other devices can prevent injuries if used properly and consistently.

Despite all these, if you are injured on the job, report your accident to your employer right away to begin to process for workers' compensation. These benefits provide coverage for any medical expenses or lost wages resulting from your injury, regardless of who was at fault.

The next thing you may wish to do is to consult an attorney. Because the world of workers' compensation is complicated, having legal counsel will guarantee that someone is looking out for your best interests. Your attorney will handle any conflicts that arise concerning your benefits and work to make sure you receive the maximum amount you deserve for your injury.

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