In the state of Florida, most employers are required by law to provide workers’ compensation benefits to employees who incurred any injury at work, during a job or developed an occupational disease based on the nature of their job.
Workers comp in Florida is designed to be a no-fault system that compensates injured or sick employees for their damages regardless of the party at fault. However, it is noteworthy that employees who receive workers’ comp cannot sue their employer or the organization in a personal injury lawsuit.
If you are an employee in Florida, it is in your best interest to know the common injuries covered by workers comp.
Occupational Accidents That May Cause Injuries
Various actions, mechanical errors, and certain conditions and circumstances at work can lead to an employee’s injury. Based on the seriousness of the accident, the damages may be more severe than others.
Most individuals think the construction, trucking and manufacturing industries are where occupational accidents may occur. However, employees in any industry can incur an injury on the job. Below are common causes of workplace injuries.
Slips, Falls, and Trips
Slips, trips, and falls account for one-third of all workplace personal injuries and are the leading cause of workers’ compensation claims. Head, back, and neck injuries, broken bones, cuts, sprains, and pulled muscles are among the injuries sustained. Occasional spills, wet or oily surfaces, weather hazards such as icy steps or walkways, and loose rugs are all causes of slips.
Poor lighting, clutter, wrinkled carpeting or mats, uncovered cables, and uneven walking surfaces are all causes of trips. Good housekeeping, quality walking surfaces, and proper footwear are the three keys to preventing these types of workplace accidents. Employees should also be encouraged to report areas where there is clutter, obstruction, spillage, or damage.
Being hit by or entangled in moving machinery
Accidents can happen to anyone who works with heavy machinery, but they are more common in factories, farms, and construction sites. Machinery that is not properly guarded poses a safety risk. When body parts become entangled in or struck by exposed moving parts or flying objects from machines that lack protective guards, the consequences are often disastrous.
Crushed hands and arms, severed fingers, blindness, and worse are among the horrific injuries caused by machinery. The best way to avoid mechanical hazards is to remember that any machine part, function, or process that could cause injury MUST be protected, and that proper operator training and protective clothing must always be provided.
Accidents are possible anywhere there are vehicles of any kind. These include being hit or run over by a moving vehicle, falling from a vehicle, being hit by falling objects from a vehicle, and being crushed by or stuck under an overturned vehicle.
The first step in avoiding these types of accidents is determining who is at risk, as well as where and when these accidents most commonly occur. Only then can prevention measures be more easily implemented. Concentrate on workplace design, ensuring that all layout routes separate pedestrians and vehicles and that any obstructions are clearly visible. Signs with directions, speed limits, and priority are also useful.
Overexertion and Repetitive Stress Injuries
The most expensive workplace injuries are musculoskeletal disorders. Back pain alone costs employers more than $7 billion per year and accounts for more than 100 million lost workdays. These types of injuries result in lost productivity and millions of dollars in annual health-care costs.
The financial impact on the employer is one thing, but the long-term effects on workers can be severe and potentially crippling, accounting for nearly 33% of occupational injuries.
Repetitive Stress Injuries (RSIs) are the fastest growing category of workplace injury, with over 100 different types of job-related injuries that are severe enough to prevent simple activities with crippling and debilitating pain.
Common Injuries in Florida Covered by Workers’ Comp
In Florida, many injuries or sicknesses developed during a job are covered by workers comp benefits. However, with the conditions that you are an employee of the organization or business where the injury or sickness was incurred, you were not intoxicated by drugs or alcohol at the time of the injury, and you duly followed all company procedures, especially in terms of safety.
Below you will find the injuries and sickness covered by workers comp in Florida.
- Spinal cord injuries
- Carpel tunnel syndrome
- Strains and sprains
- Internal organ damage
- Lacerations and contusions
- Crushed and fractured bones
- Loss of hearing and vision
- Head injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Psychological disorders
- Neck, back and shoulder injuries resulting from repetitive movements and overexertion
- Soft tissue injuries resulting from repetitive movements and overexertion
- Respiratory illnesses, mesothelioma, lung cancer, and other life-threatening diseases resulting from exposure to hazardous substances
If you were injured on the job, you may have to fight for the workers’ compensation benefits you are entitled to. Our skilled workers’ compensation attorneys at Schrier Law Group know how to protect the rights of injured workers. Set up a free consultation with a member of our legal team today to discuss workers’ compensation benefits and how we can help.