How and Why do Most Work-Related Injuries Occur?

Every seven seconds, a worker is injured in the United States. That’s 12,900 workers per day, or 4.7 million per year. And that figure is expected to climb as the country’s workforce continues to grow. Injuries are especially prevalent among younger workers who are just beginning a new job. According to Rich Ives, vice president of workers’ compensation for Travelers insurance, “More than one-quarter of injuries occur in the first year of employment.” Contact a Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Today.

In a recent report released by Travelers, the insurance company set out to determine how and why certain injuries occur on-the-job. The “Injury Impact Report” looked at a total of 1.5 million workers’ comp claims over a five-year period. Workers’ comp insurance pays for work-related injuries and illnesses, therefore, it is an excellent barometer for injuries, especially serious ones.

Sprains, Strains and Bruises

Of course, injuries are most prevalent in occupations such as construction and excavation, but they can occur in any field. In fact, the most common injuries were sprains, strains, bruises, and inflammation, and they were due to deceptively simple tasks, such as lifting and carrying objects. Nearly one-third of the 1.5 million claims were a result of these types of injuries. The next most common injuries? Slips, trips, and falls. After those, being struck by an object was most common. Not surprisingly, accidents involving falls from high places were most common among construction workers. Claims for eye injuries were also quite high in construction and manufacturing jobs.

Which injuries result in the most time off work?

With an average of 91 days off-the-job, inflammation causes the most lost work time. Fractures came in at a close second with 78 days of missed work. Sprains and strains result in about 57 off-the-job days.

Which injuries cost the most?

The least common but most expensive injuries were major injuries, such as amputations and electric shock. An amputation costs more than $100,000, limb dislocation is slightly over $97,000, and electric shock claims cost about $55,000. Although strains and sprains result in more claims, they cost much less. The average sprain or strain only costs about $17,000.

What is the overall cost of injuries to U.S. businesses?

According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), annual injuries cost U.S. employers about $170 billion. Currently, about 60% of all workers’ comp costs are related to medical care, but that number is projected to rise to 70% by 2019.

Altman & Altman, LLP – Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Serving all of Massachusetts

If you have been injured in a work-related accident, the skilled workers’ comp team at Altman & Altman, LLP can help. We have more than 50 years of experience protecting Massachusetts workers. Our knowledgeable legal team will help you get the benefits you deserve in a timely manner. Although most on-the-job injuries are eligible for workers’ comp benefits, errors on the application can result in delayed benefits, reduced benefits, or no benefits at all. Not to mention,  if negligence played a role in your injuries, you may be entitled to additional compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Don’t go through this alone. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free and confidential consultation about your case.


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