A total of 4,764 fatal work injuries were recorded in the U.S. in 2020, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Workplace accidents can happen in any industry, but some jobs are more dangerous than others. Transportation and jobs involving heavy equipment rank among the deadliest in America.
What Makes Jobs in Transportation So Dangerous?
Transportation incidents are a common cause of fatal work-related injuries. Many truck drivers are under pressure to meet unrealistic deadlines. They work long hours, which is a major cause of fatigue. Weather conditions can make driving a big rig significantly more dangerous, and negligent driving behavior of other drivers can lead to deadly truck accidents. Failure on the part of trucking companies to properly maintain vehicles and improperly loaded or overloaded trucks can make a driver’s job even more dangerous.
How Can Work Involving Heavy Equipment Lead to Fatalities?
The sheer weight, size, and power of heavy equipment poses a risk for workers. There is the risk of being run over by a machine or crushed between moving parts. Accidents are common when heavy equipment is moved from one location to another. Machine guards designed to shield workers may be missing from equipment. Inadequate training is a contributing factor to many fatal accidents involving heavy equipment.
How Important are Jobs in Transportation and Construction?
Jobs in transportation and construction are essential to the economy and the distribution of goods and services. Our citizens need homes, food, medications, and other goods to survive. People living in cities rely on refuse workers to collect and remove garbage and recycling year round, in all kinds of weather. Some of the most dangerous jobs today are among the most vital to our society.
What Role Do Employers Play in Fatal Workplace Injuries?
Employers have an ethical responsibility to create and maintain a safe workplace. Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, among other responsibilities, employers are required to:
- Provide a workplace free from the recognized hazards and in compliance with OSHA standards.
- Evaluate the working conditions to ensure the work processes conform to the applicable standards.
- Provide employees with safe tools and equipment, and ensure they are properly and regularly maintained.
- Warn employees of potential hazards.
- Establish, update, and communicate operating procedures that follow health and safety requirements.
- Provide safety training in a language workers understand.
When employers fail to meet these requirements, workers can suffer serious or fatal injuries.
Do You Need a Lawyer After Serious On-the-Job Injuries?
Injured transportation and heavy equipment workers may need extensive medical treatment and significant time away from work. If you have lost a loved one in a fatal workplace accident, you have a right to pursue death benefits under workers’ compensation. Depending on the circumstances, you may be entitled to file a wrongful death claim against responsible parties. Your best chance of recovering the compensation you need after a serious workplace accident or wrongful death is to have an experienced New York workplace injury attorney in your corner.
Why Choose WRSMH?
Our trial lawyers at Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP have more than five decades of experience. We have been named among the Best Law Firms by U.S. News and World Reports and ranked Tier 1 for personal injury litigation. Our attorneys are awarded membership in the elite Million Dollar Advocates Forum and the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. We have won hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients in injury cases, many of which involved workplace injuries.
If you have been badly hurt or lost a loved one in a work-related accident, call us at (212) 986-7353 to schedule a free consultation. Our firm has the knowledge, skills, and resources to effectively pursue your claim.