Machine Operator Injuries
According to the most recent data from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (“BLS”), machinery accidents are responsible for more than 800 fatalities and approximately 18,000 serious injuries each year. Most of these incidents are preventable, and employers have a legal obligation to take the necessary steps to ensure a safe workplace. However, whether it’s due to employer oversight, defective equipment, or the negligence of a fellow employee, contractor or another third party, machine operator injuries happen with shocking frequency.
The Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, is a respected Charlotte workers’ compensation firm dedicated to advocating on behalf of injured workers. We have decades of experience pursuing workers’ compensation claims on behalf of employees, including machine workers and others working in dangerous occupations. Our understanding of the system, dedication to our clients’ well-being, and keen negotiation skills make the Olsinski Law Firm a go-to choice when looking for the best workers’ compensation attorney in North Carolina.The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation System Provides Much-Needed Benefits to Injured Employees
North Carolina’s workers’ compensation laws provide certain benefits to workers who were injured on the job or developed an occupational disease. Unlike personal injury cases, employees do not need to prove that anyone else was at fault for their injuries. This is because workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. However, in exchange for the benefit of not needing to prove fault, workers give up their right to sue their employer in most situations. However, this does not prevent an injured worker from filing a personal injury lawsuit against a non-employer. For example, a machine operator who is hurt as a result of a defective piece of equipment may pursue a workers’ compensation claim through their employer as well as a personal injury claim against the manufacturer of the equipment.Common Machine Operator Injuries
Machine operators are exposed to a wide range of hazards that can result in serious injuries. Below is a list of some of the most common machine workers injuries we’ve encountered over the years:
Lacerations and Cuts: These are among the most common injuries, often resulting from contact with sharp objects, tools, or machinery parts.
Crush Injuries: Crush injuries typically occur when a worker’s body part gets caught between two objects, like machinery parts or between a machine and a surface. This can result in broken bones, nerve damage, and even amputation.
Amputations: Amputation injuries are especially prevalent in industries with heavy machinery or cutting tools. The most commonly affected body parts are fingers, hands, and arms.
Burns: Machine operators who use welding equipment or work with steam or electricity are the most likely to experience burn injuries.
Hearing Loss: Prolonged exposure to high decibel levels without proper hearing protection can result in permanent hearing damage.
Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSIs): Repetitive strain injuries, also called repetitive stress injuries, can develop from performing the same motion again and again over long periods of time. Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common RSIs among machine workers.
Eye Injuries: Eye injuries among machine operators typically result from flying particles, chemical exposure, or very bright lights (like welding arcs). Proper eye protection is essential in many machine operations.
Respiratory Problems: Machine operators are frequently surrounded by dust, fumes, or chemicals that can lead to respiratory diseases or conditions like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or even cancer.
Musculoskeletal Disorders: Musculoskeletal disorders usually develop as a result of lifting heavy objects, maintaining an awkward posture, or repeated stress on specific parts of the body.
Entanglement: Working around heavy equipment can create a situation where a worker’s hair, clothing, or jewelry can get caught in the moving parts of a machine, pulling them into the equipment.
Vibration Injuries: Prolonged exposure to vibration, like from hand-held tools, can cause conditions like hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS).Learn More About Pursuing a NC Workers’ Compensation Claim by Scheduling a free consultation With the Olsinski Law Firm
If you or a loved one recently suffered a serious injury while working as a machine operator, it is essential that you understand your rights. Pursuing a workers’ compensation claim may provide you and your family with meaningful benefits that will cover your medical expenses and replace most of the income you couldn’t earn while you are recovering. At the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, we have extensive experience meticulously preparing claims on behalf of clients who sustained serious machine worker injuries, giving us a nuanced understanding of what’s needed to connect you with the benefits you need to overcome your injuries and get back to work. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with one of our Charlotte work injury lawyers, give us a call at 704-405-2580. You can also reach our Cabarrus County workers’ compensation attorneys at 704-918-4747. We proudly represent clients in Charlotte, Concord and Kannapolis, as well as throughout Mecklenburg, Gaston, Iredell, Rowan, and Union Counties.