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Sauk Rapids Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Injuries common among restaurant and food service workers

If you make your living working in a Minnesota restaurant or food service environment, you may know all too well how common aches, pains and other injuries are for those in your line of work. Many of the injuries common among restaurant and food service workers are the same industrywide, meaning you face similar dangers, regardless of whether you work in a drive-thru window or a fine dining restaurant.

Just what types of workplace hazards and injury risks do you face working in a restaurant or hospitality setting?

Building a better Minnesota for workers

The Minnesota economy was once based largely on agriculture, mining and the fur trade. These are, of course, dangerous professions, and their dwindling popularity means safer workers. However, the shift towards a service-focused workforce is not the only factor contributing to making the state a better place to be on the job.

Of course, the economic changes play a significant role. The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development reports that the majority of Minnesota workers are now employed in the service sector as opposed to in goods-producing industries. Over 10 percent of the workforce is employed in retail and over 15 percent in healthcare, as opposed to just over 10 percent the entire manufacturing sector. 

What are common myths about workplace injuries?

As an employee in Minnesota, you may sometimes forget that any job you do comes with a certain amount of risk. When it comes to sudden and unfortunate incidents in the workplace, Lindberg Law, P.C., can help dispell factual inaccuracies and guide you through these difficult times.

The first myth is that only those working in "dangerous" professions are at risk for workplace injuries. This is entirely false. All jobs come with their own hazards. Any time you work with heavy machinery, high voltage electricity, or even just tasks involving repetitive motion, you're putting yourself into a potentially dangerous situation. For example, office workers commonly suffer from repetitive stress injury or back and spine damage because of the constant lifting and bending they do. Workplace injures don't discriminate based on employment.

3 common causes of truck driver injuries

As a truck driver, you are essential to the American economy. Without your hard work, people would not be able to enjoy the accessibility of various consumer goods and groceries that they take for granted. You make a lot of sacrifices for your job. Not only do you spend days or weeks at a time away from your friends and family, but you are also put at risk of an on-the-job accident.

An important part of staying safe is knowing what hazards you encounter as a big rig driver. Here are some of the more prevalent risks you face while doing your job.

Protecting older workers on the job

Minnesota residents may not always consider older workers when they think about workplace injuries. Being older can sometimes cause people to incur more injuries on the job, though, and they may be susceptible to more fatal injuries.

Older workers are more present in the workforce than they used to be. The Associated Press says that over the past ten years, 37 percent of older people are more likely to be in the workforce. Many of the jobs these people take on require some sort of physical labor. Since 2015, older workers have become 65 percent more likely to be involved in a fatal accident at work. Some of these injuries occur because of changes in a person's body as he or she ages. Some people may develop problems with their balance or experience hearing and vision impairment. Other people may have arthritis that can affect their movement on the job.

Keep workers safe inside trenches

Minnesota construction workers may most often associate scaffolding and equipment as potential hazards. However, trenches can also cause people to incur injuries and it is important to follow the proper procedures to ensure no one is harmed.

Many construction workers may not realize that working inside a trench is one of the most hazardous assignments on a construction site. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says that people can be harmed if the trench caves in or if people fall into the trench. The atmosphere inside can also become contaminated, causing workers to become ill. To keep workers safe, it is important for all trenches to be inspected by someone knowledgeable about the types of hazards unique to trenches. This person typically should inspect the trench each day and predict or identify situations that might be dangerous. These situations should usually be fixed before workers enter the trench.

Should you prepare for construction dangers this spring?

Spring is just around the corner, even if the recent weather makes it hard to believe. As you know, it will be more common to see construction in Minnesota once the weather warms up. Spring and summer means construction season for most states across the country, and this might also mean an increase in accidents, whether you work in the construction industry or are a pedestrian near worksites.

If it is your job to put up buildings or improve roadways, you already know that you work in one of the nation’s most dangerous jobs, as FindLaw points out. When construction season ramps up, you will want to be on alert for the most common accident types in the industry. Known as the Fatal Four, these include falling, electrocution, being struck by objects or being caught in between machinery or objects. When you observe safety measures on the job and know the risks, you stand a better chance of keeping yourself and your coworkers safe.

Tips for improving warehouse workers' safety

Some warehouses are safer than others. When employees work in an environment that seems dangerous, it is no fun for them to head to work and wonder, "Will today be the day I have an accident like the one Bob had?"

There are a few things managers and supervisors can do immediately and for little cost to improve their workers' safety.

How dangerous are elevators in the workplace?

If you are a Minnesota worker whose job requires you to work on, in or near elevators, your risk of injury or even death is substantially greater than that of general elevator passengers. The Center for Construction Research and Training reports that approximately 17,000 people are injured each year in elevator accidents and 31 are killed.

Half of these fatalities are to elevator installers, repairmen and maintenance workers. Most of them, 56 percent, are due to a worker falling down the elevator shaft; 18 percent are due to a worker getting caught in or between the elevator’s moving parts; 16 percent are due to a worker being struck by the elevator or one of its counterweights.

3 tips for lifting properly at work

Whether you realize it or not, you probably lift throughout the day when you are at work. You may lift small items or entire people, depending on your line of work. Health care, industrial and office workers are all susceptible to injuries resultant of improper lifting. If workers understand how to lift properly, they may easily prevent many of these incidents and avoid injury.

According to the United States Department of Labor, lifting injuries are one of the foremost causes of missed work days on the job. Regardless of what industry you work in, you should consider the following tips for lifting safely. Applying these techniques can save you from injury and missed work.

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