All Minnesota workers know they face some degree of injury each time they are on the job. But the injury risk is more prevalent for warehouse workers than in many other occupations. Warehouse workers who take the time to familiarize themselves with the most common workplace hazards may be able to mitigate much of the risk they face.
Slip and fall accidents
The Department of Labor identifies slip and fall accidents as the number one cause of injury for warehouse workers. These accidents are responsible for 25% of the injury claims made by warehouse workers and 15% of the deaths blamed on warehouse accidents each year. The Department also estimates that 95 million workdays are lost each year by people who slip and fall while performing warehouse duties.
Forklifts are an integral part of warehouse operations, but these vehicles are also a leading cause of warehouse work injury. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration reports nearly 35,000 serious forklift accidents each year. The annual deaths that happen because of forklifts represent 16% of the total warehouse accident fatalities.
Warehouse work can take a toll on the bodies of workers with time. Many workers suffer injuries each year due to the amount of exertion placed on an area of their body. These injuries often happen to the back and shoulders and involve heavy or constant lifting. Other actions that can cause an overexertion injury include pushing, pulling, lowering, and carrying objects in a warehouse.
Loading docks can be a dangerous area for warehouse workers to perform job duties. Dockworkers have suffered injuries from falls, found themselves pinned between heavy objects, and became involved in an accident with a forklift or other vehicle. Warehouse dockworkers need to remain alert to the many hazards around them at all times.
People who are injured in the workplace can face severe disruption to their quality of life and ability to earn a living. In most cases, they are eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits, but they might want to have an attorney’s assistance in navigating what can be a complex process.