Workplace accidents are more common than many people may realize. A work-related injury can result in permanent disability and significant loss of income. Workers in Fairfield County and throughout Connecticut should be aware of their rights in case of an injury.

A recent report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics states that more than 4,600 people died nationwide from work-related injuries in 2011. Although the number of deaths has decreased compared with the number in 2010, the president of the American Society of Safety Engineers has expressed serious concerns about the issue. He was quoted as saying, “It is very serious and unacceptable that, on average, 13 people die every day from occupational injuries.” The ASSE president strongly advised businesses to adopt responsive management systems with an aim of preventing work-related injuries and illnesses.

Accidents are often the result of dangerous working conditions. On many occasions, employers fail to observe safety standards in the workplace and thereby put the health and safety of workers at risk. In certain occupations, the workers may also develop illnesses due to unsafe working conditions.

Workers have a right to a safe work environment. Employers have an obligation to take all possible precautionary measures to avoid accidents.

Victims of workplace accidents can file a workers’ compensation claim against their employers. Employers are liable to compensate the workers for medical expenses, lost wages and rehabilitation costs. Workers’ compensation law covers all injuries and illnesses in the workplace. It is important for the victims to understand that they have people and places to turn for support and to receive compensation when it is deserved.

Source: “Safety leader expresses concern at fatality stats,” Oct. 10, 2012