Deadliest Workplace Accidents
The top four leading causes of work-related fatalities
continue to be incidents that involve a motor vehicle. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 36% of occupational fatalities are associated with motor vehicles with 1,275 workers dying on average each year (between 2003-2010) from highway crashes.
In addition to highway accidents, fatalities also stem from non-roadway accidents. These could occur on the workplace premises or a tractor overturning in a farm field. And each year, many workers also die from being struck by a vehicle, often in a work zone.
Whether or not your loved one spent his or her workday “on the road,” you may have a compensable
workers’ compensation case
. Even if driving isn’t part of their normal work duties, if an employee is arriving at work or leaving for the day and is still on the employer’s property when a fatal accident occurs, this may be covered by the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act
. If an employee is driving a vehicle to perform an errand or duty strictly as part of their employment and is killed in a motor-vehicle accident you may have a compensable
workers’ comp case.
As with all workers’ compensation cases
, on-the-job deaths resulting from motor vehicle-related incidents are rarely black and white. Contacting a workers’ compensation attorney
, sooner than later, will help you navigate your claim and understand North Carolina’s workers’ comp law
When it comes to on-the-job deaths, what are the top causes?
After discussing the top 10 causes of on-the-job injuries
, I wanted to turn to the leading causes of death in the workplace. The Federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration reports that in America, 13 people are killed on the job every day. Preliminary 2011 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the U.S. Department of Labor shows that 148 individuals in North Carolina suffered fatal work injuries. Although the specifics of each case vary, there are 12 unfortunately all too common causes of death in the workplace. These are:
- 1. Collision between vehicles on the highway. This remains the most common cause of fatal occupational injuries.
- 2. Non-collisions involving vehicles, such as rollovers.
- 3. Workers struck by a vehicle.
- 4. Accidents involving non-highway vehicles, including industrial and farm vehicles.
- 5. Struck by falling objects.
- 6. Contacting an electrical current.
- 7. Fall to lower level.
- 8. Caught in or crushed by equipment or objects.
- 9. Struck by a non-moving object.
- 10. Fires and explosions.
- 11. Falls from a roof.
- 12. Falls from a ladder.
I’ll examine these causes of workplace fatalities in more detail in blog posts to come, but if a loved one has died due to an on-the-job injury, it is important to quickly seek the guidance of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to fully understand your rights.
High-profile incidents of workplace violence
unfortunately seem to occur all too frequently. But murder is not the only type of violence in the workplace. According to the Department of Justice, 2 million assaults occur each year at work. These include rapes, robberies and murders but also threats, verbal abuse, physical attacks and intimidation.
The Occupational Safety and Health Act, administered by OSHA, requires employers to provide a workplace "free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees." You as an employee have the right to work in a safe environment.
What stand has your employer taken on aggressive, or violent, behavior in the workplace? Is there a zero-tolerance policy in place and is it followed? Have managers and supervisors been properly trained to recognize danger signals, such as an employee making bizarre remarks or verbal threats? What is the procedure if a termination occurs? Does your employer offer an Employee Assistance Program where employees can safely and confidentially discuss personal problems? Are thorough background investigations conducted for all employees?
With workplace violence one of the 10 most common on-the-job injuries, it’s important that if you or a loved one has been involved with an incident of violence at work, that you contact an attorney. An experienced lawyer
will be able to help you fully understand North Carolina’s workers’ comp law
Latest Verdicts and Settlements
Crabtree v. The State of NC 2004
A State Department of Transportation Dump Truck, pulling a large trailer carrying a steam roller, lost control on a mountain road, crossed the center-line and struck Kelly Crabtree’s van head-on...
Worker Comp Client Testimonials
Wes Barger, North Carolina
"Thank you John, and all the staff at The Law Offices of John M. McCabe, P.A., for all your help over the years since my accident and for your friendship! I am truly grateful!"
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