Workplace injuries happen, and when they do, they can be a traumatic experience. They can affect workers both physically and mentally, requiring time off work and rehabilitation to return to full health. Workplace injury victims may experience anxiety during this time, especially if they are the breadwinners of their families. However, what many workers don’t realize is that they may be eligible for compensation.
So, what are the most common workplace injuries in 2021? Let’s take a moment to have a closer look:
- Strains and Lifting Injuries
Strains and other injuries associated with lifting are among the most common workplace injuries, even in 2021, and they can affect workers of any age and in any job role. This type of injury is often due to poor handling practices. If workers bend, twist, or lift when moving heavy objects, they may sustain injuries to their back, legs, neck, or knees, which can limit their ability to work.
- Construction Site Injury
There are many dangers present on construction sites, and workers may sustain serious injuries when working in this environment. Accidents such as falling, tripping, and slipping are common on construction sites, and the chances of receiving an injury in the form of open wounds are much higher when workers are using machinery and tools.
A bone fracture can prevent a person from working for many months. A fracture may happen when a person falls, trips, or slips. Fractures may also be sustained if a worker has a limb crushed by machinery.
- Injury in the Office
Not every injury happens in a workshop or on a construction site. Injuries such as lifting, pulling, twisting, and straining can be sustained in the office when workers are moving objects. Repetitive strain injuries occur when a worker performs the same action repeatedly. In addition, falling or slipping on stairs inside the office can lead to fractures, bruising, and other physical damage.
- Psychological Strain
Psychological trauma can be every bit as debilitating as physical injury. Bullying, intimidation, or continual harassment in the workplace can lead to anxiety and emotional instability. These factors can also lead a worker to take time off work to recover.
- Tissue Injury
Injuries involving tendons, muscles, and soft tissues are very common in the workplace. Again, these injuries are often the result of repetitive actions or incorrect manual goods handling practices.
How Can We Prevent Injury in the Workplace?
Many workplace injuries can be avoided by training staff to observe proper workplace safety and correct goods handling practices. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide a workplace environment that is as safe as possible for all staff members.
How Do I Claim Compensation?
If you have been injured at work, you may be eligible for compensation. Compensation may cover things such as:
- Medical Expenses
- Loss of Income
- Rehabilitation Services
- Legal Costs
If you think you may be eligible for a compensation claim, there are a few steps you’ll need to follow.
- Seek Medical Attention
You need to visit your doctor immediately after the incident in order to get the proper treatment, even if you think the injury is the only minor. Sometimes, the injury may worsen over time, so it’s important to get medical advice and give your doctor all the details of the accident that led to your injury. They will then be able to give you a certificate that will help with your compensation claim.
- Inform Your Employer About Your Injury
You’ll want to report the incident to your employer immediately, and no later than 30 days after the event. They should have a register you can fill in, but if they don’t, you can provide them written details about your injury. Be sure to keep a copy of the correspondence for your own records.
- Submit A Workers’ Compensation Claim Form
Your employer should be able to provide you with a workers’ compensation form when you report your industry. Your doctor can also provide you with this if your employer doesn’t. Be sure to fill out this form in a timely manner and include any attachments that may support your claim.
Do I Need a Compensation Lawyer?
In many cases, you may be able to complete your workers’ compensation claim on your own, alongside your employer and doctor. There may, however, be times where your claim is more complex and you could benefit from the assistance of a compensation lawyer.
Some cases where you might want to consider consulting a compensation lawyer include:
- When it’s unclear whether or not your injuries are work-related.
- If you require extensive medical treatment.
- If you need to take long periods of time off work.
- If the injury has resulted in permanent disability.
Being injured in the workplace can be a taxing experience, so it’s worth knowing how to avoid being involved in an incident, and how to respond if you are. If you have any doubts about your safety at work, talk to your employer or union about how they can make the workplace as comfortable and safe as possible.
Jason is the Marketing Manager at a local advertising company in Australia. He moved to Australia 10 years back for his passion for advertising. Jason recently joined BFA as a volunteer writer and contributes by sharing his valuable experience and knowledge.