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Modesto Workers' Compensation Blog

Are you familiar with these dangerous tools?

Depending on your profession, you may use a variety of tools throughout your day. For example, if you work in construction, you rely on tools to improve efficiency and complete the task at hand in a timely manner.

Here are three of the most dangerous tools that workers can use:

  • Radial arm saw: Even though these are not as popular as they were in the past, many people, such as carpenters, still use them regularly. With a sharp, fast-moving blade inching toward you, any false move can result in a serious injury.
  • Angle grinder: It doesn't look like the most dangerous tool, but an angle grinder spins at a rate of 10,000 rounds per minute (RPM). When you add in attachments, such as a grinding wheel or wire brush, it's easy to see how it can cause injury.
  • Nail gun: A common tool in many industries, a nail gun fires on contact and with extreme power. For example, it has enough force to power nails through wood, shingles and many other materials. If a nail from one of these guns hits your body, it will cause injury or death.

Occupational ailments vs. repetitive trauma

Workers’ compensation is a benefits system that covers more than just injuries that occur after a workplace accident or while performing work-sanctioned activities. In California, it also covers trauma that develops from repetitive actions and prolonged exposure to occupational health hazards. Workers’ compensation claims involving cumulative and occupational hazard trauma are not as cut and dry or easy to navigate. 

Unlike specific injury cases where the cause of injury is often less difficult to ascertain, repetitive injuries and occupational ailments arise from nonspecific events and multiple issues that take time to develop. Many employers dispute the veracity of these claims to avoid paying out benefits. Employees who believe their work-related injuries are the result of time and multiple exposures should take time to review the basics of occupational illness and repetitive trauma and how they may pertain to their circumstances. 

Workers’ compensation and retaliation: Protect yourself

If you're injured on the job, you may find yourself in position to file a claim for workers' compensation benefits. While this gives you financial peace of mind, it doesn't necessarily remove all the stress from your life.

For example, you may have concerns about workers' compensation retaliation. Even though there are laws in place to protect employees, some employers don't take kindly to those who file a claim for workers' compensation benefits.

A back strain requires more treatment than many people think

A back strain is a painful, uncomfortable injury that makes it difficult to live your life. For example, if you suffer a back strain at work, you may come to find that you're unable to do your job until you make a full recovery.

Fortunately, there are many ways to treat a back strain, including the following:

  • Ice your back: Doing this several times per day, for the first two to three days after the accident, will help reduce pain and swelling.
  • Apply heat: After two to three days of ice, use heat therapy to loosen your muscles and provide pain relief.
  • Use some form of support: For example, a belt can help support your back, giving it time to recover.
  • Partake in physical therapy: Not only does this help you regain your strength, but it can also improve flexibility while helping prevent future injuries.

How to prevent dehydration when working outdoors

Even if you're used to working outdoors, it doesn't mean you can't become dehydrated. It's imperative to understand the common signs of dehydration, as well as the steps you can take to prevent trouble.

Here are some tips for preventing dehydration when working outdoors:

  • Drink up before your day begins: Before you ever hit the job site, do your best to drink as much water as possible. This will prepare you for the day to come.
  • Replenish yourself throughout the day: It's critical to drink water throughout the day, as you'll lose electrolytes as you sweat.
  • Take breaks: Rather than push yourself to the limit, take breaks as necessary. Do so indoors or in a shady area, as this helps you recover.
  • Eat fruits and vegetables: These both contain water, vitamins and salt, all of which help prevent dehydration.

Brain injuries lead to significant fatigue

You fall on the job and hit your head. You lose consciousness. When you wake up in the hospital, they explain that you suffered a brain injury and it could take a long time to heal.

As life moves forward, many symptoms do seem to heal on their own. What you cannot shake is an overwhelming sense of fatigue. It's so bad that it feels like a disability, making it impossible for you to work. Is that also from your brain injury?

How to avoid becoming a workers comp statistic on the site

Going to work should not become a life or death situation, but in the case of a construction site, accidents and mistakes leave many injured or worse. You need to protect yourself from suffering a work site accident.

The government implemented workplace safety regulations for a reason. However, not everyone follows them. Before you decide to skip the safety goggles or tether, you may want to consider the most common construction workers' compensation injuries and how to prevent them.

Mold exposure at work can affect your health

The presence of mold in your workplace is a serious problem that requires immediate attention. Mold exposure can affect your health in many ways, both in the short and long term.

Some of the most common symptoms associated with mold exposure include:

  • Wheezing
  • Coughing
  • Stuffiness of your nose
  • Itchy skin
  • Red and itchy eyes

What are the top causes of ladder accidents?

With many professions, using a ladder is a necessity. For example, if you work as a roofer, you'll spend a lot of time climbing up and down all types of ladders.

While doing so, it's imperative to keep your safety in mind. There are many common causes of ladder accidents, including the following:

  • Missing the bottom rung: As you near the ground, keep close tabs on how close you are. Missing the last step can cause you to slip and fall to the ground.
  • Overreaching: Attempting to overreach can cause the ladder to tip. If the ladder isn't in good position, climb to the bottom and reposition it.
  • Wrong size ladder: Make sure the ladder you choose is the right size for the task. For instance, if you have to stand on the top rung to reach the desired height, your ladder isn't tall enough.
  • Failure to maintain three points of contact: If you neglect to do this, there's a greater chance of losing your balance. Always keep two feet and one hand or two hands and one foot on the ladder.
  • Placing a ladder on soft or uneven ground: Firm and level ground provide a solid base for your ladder. Conversely, soft or uneven ground increases the risk of tipping as you climb higher.

The responsibility held by employers for workplace accidents

The workplace can be dangerous even if you don't work in a dangerous profession. Why? It all depends on the employer and how seriously they take employee safety at all times. If an employer is lax in how they keep the workplace safe, it is incredibly possible that accidents can occur that lead to serious injuries and maybe even death.

Where does the employer responsibility to provide a safe workplace come from? For starters, there are regulations and laws in place from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that creates this responsibility for all employers in Modesto, California and the rest of the state. Employers must meet these regulations all the time or risk being fined, or even shut down, if the violations are serious.

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