If you live in Pittsburgh, you know the industrial history of the city. As a long-standing manufacturing and steel production hub, Pittsburgh has been a center for blue-collar work. Hazards of blue-collar jobs revolve around physical injury and in spite of the new industries that are rising to prominence in Pittsburgh job site injuries are still prevalent. Whether you work in a factory, warehouse or the medical field demanding physical work carries with it a risk of worksite injury.
From slips and falls to trench collapses to heavy machinery accidents – worksite injuries can be devastating, leaving workers unable to perform their jobs and provide for their families. That’s where workers’ compensation comes in.
What does workers’ compensation cover in Pennsylvania?
In Pennsylvania, workers’ compensation has three components. Together, their purpose is to provide financial ease during the often challenging recovery process. The three benefits are as follows:
- Medical care benefits: Medical care benefits cover doctor’s visits, hospital stays, surgeries, medications, rehabilitation, and other necessary medical expenses. The workers’ compensation insurer usually pays these costs directly to the healthcare provider.
- Partial wage replacement benefits: Under Pennsylvania law, workers who suffer injuries while performing job site duties are entitled to receive partial wage replacement benefits. These benefits provide two-thirds of the average weekly wage as temporary disability payments, enabling the injured worker and their family to maintain some semblance of their standard of living during the recovery process.
- Death benefits: If an employee dies in a work-related accident or as a result of a job site injury, their dependents may be entitled to death benefits. These benefits help cover the cost of a funeral and provide a percentage of lost wages to the surviving dependents. In Pennsylvania, the amount of death benefits depends on the employee’s average weekly wage before their death.
What are industries where employees commonly suffer worksite injuries?
- University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC): Employing over 53,000 residents, UPMC is a major healthcare provider, operating numerous hospitals and clinics in the region.
- U.S. Steel: With 24,540 employees, U.S. Steel produces steel mill products, distributed across North America and Europe.
- Hallmark Health: Employing 17,835 regional professionals, Hallmark Health is a leading provider of health services.
- Walmart and Sam’s Club: With 12,000 employees, these two are major retail and warehouse employers.
Each of these industries offer their own unique hazards.
What are common injuries specific to Pittsburgh medical workers?
Healthcare workers in Pittsburgh, including nurses and CNAs, are at high risk of back and spinal injuries. Repetitive bending, uncomfortable postures, and lifting and moving patients are common causes of these injuries. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) conducted an analysis that found lower back pain is especially prevalent among healthcare professionals and nurses. Nursing is considered a high-risk occupation for lower back pain, with rates even exceeding those of heavy industry workforces.
What are common job site injuries for Pittsburgh steel workers?
Pittsburgh steel workers face unique hazards to an industry that relies on heavy machinery, production of heavy objects, steel cutting tools, and high temperatures. Common job site injuries include burns, lacerations, fractures, and musculoskeletal injuries. Burns can occur from metal sparks or hot surfaces, while lacerations can result from sharp metal edges. Fractures can occur from heavy machinery or falling objects, and musculoskeletal injuries can occur from repetitive motions or heavy lifting. Steel workers are also at risk of respiratory illnesses due to exposure to dust and fumes in the workplace.
What are common worksite injuries for Pittsburgh warehouse workers?
Warehouse workers perform repetitive movements throughout their day, organizing large three-dimensional spaces. Common worksite injuries include musculoskeletal injuries and head injuries. Musculoskeletal injuries can result from lifting or moving heavy objects or from slips and falls. Head injuries can occur from falling objects or collisions with equipment. In addition, warehouse workers may also be at risk of respiratory illnesses from exposure to dust and chemicals in the workplace.
The big question is, if you have suffered a job site injury, how can you secure the workers’ compensation benefits that you and your family deserve as you work through the recovery process?
Contact our experienced Pittsburgh workers’ compensation lawyers
Don’t make the mistake of facing this legal challenge alone. If you work in a physically demanding job like healthcare, steel, or warehouse work, you face a high risk of sustaining a work-related injury. In the event of an injury, it’s essential to understand your legal rights and options under Pennsylvania’s workers’ compensation laws. Seeking the guidance of an experienced personal injury attorney is essential to properly navigate the legal process and maximize your chances of receiving the medical care and benefits you deserve.
At Carmody & Ging, Attorneys at Law, we understand the challenges faced by workers in Pittsburgh and are committed to providing compassionate legal representation. Our attorneys can help you explore your legal options and protect your rights, whether through a workers’ compensation claim or personal injury lawsuit against your employer. Contact us today for a free consultation and learn how we can help you.