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Franklin County Personal Injury Law Blog

Landscapers face severe occupational risks in winter months

Landscapers in Pennsylvania do not only work when the sun is out. The nature of their jobs offers them few tasks to do indoors, and winter storms often have them spending many hours outdoors addressing broken trees and other weather-related damage. If you work in this industry, you might benefit from learning as much as you can about cold stress and how to protect yourself.

Cold stress occurs when you work in near-freezing temperatures that cause a drop in your body temperature at a rate that is faster than what your body can produce. Exacerbating factors include wind, dampness and wetness, and even sweating under heavy clothing can cause a drop in your body's core temperature.

Understanding workers' compensation benefits

Even a minor workplace injury could be devastating to your family's budget. A trip to the emergency room for a broken bone, stitches or other injury can result in bills from numerous caregivers, including the doctor who treated you, the radiologist, any consulting physicians, the pharmacist and others. The hospital itself will likely charge you a fee.

If your injury is more severe, you can expect those costs to be higher. On top of that, if you are not clocking in, you are not collecting a paycheck. You may feel your dreams for the future slipping away. Fortunately, most Pennsylvania employers carry workers' compensation insurance as the law requires. Understanding your benefits under this program may help you claim what you deserve if you are injured at work.

Why experienced guidance after a truck accident is important

Large trucks and semitrailers are responsible for delivering products across the country, and they play a significant role in the American economy. Trucks are important, but they are significantly heavier and larger than other types of vehicles on the road. When trucks are in accidents with passenger vehicles, it can result in devastating consequences for Pennsylvania victims.

The aftermath of these types of accidents can be complex. As a victim of a truck collision, you understand how complicated it can be to simply deal with insurance matters and recover from your injuries. These types of accidents are different from others, and you may find it beneficial to seek assistance as you look to get better and move forward from your truck accident. 

The many occupational risks faced by cashiers

Occupational hazards exist in almost all jobs. Many people in Pennsylvania might not realize that cashiers put their health -- and even their lives -- on the line to serve their customers. If this is how you earn your income, you will know that when it comes to robberies, your job falls in the highest risk sector.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, employers must protect the health and safety of all employees, even those who work part-time and earners of minimum wages. Did you start your job as a cashier without any experience? Employers must provide adequate safety training, inform workers of potential risks and teach them how to deal with dangerous or threatening situations.

Protect your teen from year-end hazards on Pennsylvania roads

Hundreds of people nationwide lose their lives in car accidents over the year-end holidays every year, including in Pennsylvania, and those left with serious injuries make up hundreds of thousands more. Sadly, many of these victims are young, inexperienced teenage drivers who were unprepared for the hazards posed by holiday traffic and winter weather hazards. Safety authorities suggest parents of teen drivers make road safety part of their year-end traditions.

Are the holidays also your family's happiest times for making memories to last a lifetime? Then you might want to do whatever you can to avoid adding sad memories to year-end celebrations for years to come. Most car accidents are preventable by following basic safety precautions, which are particularly crucial for young drivers who lack the experience to make instant decisions in emergency situations.

Forklifts could be life-threatening workplace hazards

Workers in warehouses in the area between Philadelphia and Baltimore face multiple safety hazards. Some of the most dangerous pieces of machinery in such facilities are mobile equipment such as lift trucks and forklifts. If you are the operator of such a vehicle, you might benefit from a reminder about the hazards you face and the steps you can take to protect yourself.

Forklifts have multiple moving parts that pose injury risks, and an added hazard is its size and shape. It is crucial for you to understand the challenges posed by the machine and its unique center of gravity when it comes to balancing loads.

Your child's gifts might pose life-threatening risks

The continued need for the public and government agencies to protect children from hazardous toys is evident after a recent investigation into the safety of toys on the shelves this holiday season. Although the Consumer Product Safety Commission along with distributors and manufacturers work to protect children from hazardous toys, sometimes, recalls only occur once injury reports reach authorities or manufacturers. This could leave you -- unknowingly -- with dangerous toys in your home.

Although recalled toys are likely no longer offered for sale, you will be wise to check for recalls occasionally to identify those that might already be a threat to the safety of your child. Online shopping has become popular, but you would be wise to examine toys when they arrive because appropriate warnings might be absent in descriptions online.

Mind your step to avoid hospital and courtroom visits this winter

Slips, trips and falls happen throughout the year. However, chances of slip-and-fall accidents are significantly higher as New Year approaches. Snow and ice are your biggest enemies when you visit Pennsylvania shopping centers, hotels, restaurants, supermarkets, apartment buildings or office complexes. Although property owners must make reasonable efforts to prevent incidents that could injure guests and patrons, many of them fail to implement plans for ice and snow removal.

If you should suffer injuries from a fall on the property of someone who neglected to take the necessary steps to remove snow and ice hazards, you might have grounds to file a civil lawsuit against that property owner. However, your fall will not necessarily be a landlord's fault, and the burden to prove negligence will be on you.

How can you stay safe while driving at night?

Daylight Saving Time ended earlier this month, which means it is getting darker sooner. Driving on Pennsylvania roads at night is the most hazardous time to drive, and you might find yourself spending more time driving at night. The National Safety Council says fatigue, shorter days, compromised night vision and various other factors increase the risk of fatal car accidents at night to three times the daytime risk.

Most drivers require time to adjust to the circumstances, and you might find that the darkness compromises your peripheral vision, color recognition and depth perception. Furthermore, oncoming vehicles' glaring headlights might blind you temporarily.

Machinery maintenance, installation and repair can be dangerous

There are many dangerous occupations in the United States. Everyone knows that construction, firefighting and similar jobs can be dangerous. But one occupation that gets a little less press for its dangers is installation and maintenance work on industrial machines and heating and cooling systems.

While these industries are doing what they can to keep their workers safe, these are inherently dangerous jobs. Every year people are injured and killed in these jobs through no fault of their own.