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Phoenix Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Industrial accident results in man's head trapped in excavator

After an employee has been injured on the job in Arizona, the last thing he or she should have to worry about is money. Especially in cases of severe injury where surgery is required, the injured worker should be able to concentrate on recovery, not how he or she is going to afford to pay for any required medical treatments. In another state, an injured worker had just such an experience after an industrial accident led to him needing surgery.

An employee of C&D Waste is now recovering from the surgery that was required after a workplace accident resulted in his head getting stuck in an excavator. The incident took place at approximately 3 p.m. on March 15, when the man's head somehow became trapped between the excavator's cab and the arm-like boom part of the device. No one seems entirely certain how the incident actually occurred.

Appeals court finds in favor of woman injured on the job

While many workers in Arizona may know about workers' compensation, most people are trusting enough to believe that, should they ever need it, the system is almost automatic and guaranteed. Unfortunately, this is often far from the case. A woman who was injured on the job in another state had to fight to receive her benefits because her employer had rejected her workers' compensation claim.

In September 2014, the 21-year-old airport employee was at her job at the international airport when her mother brought her some food. As the employee was driving a luggage tug to get her meal from her mother, the tug flipped. As a result of the crash, the woman lost her lower leg.

Workers' compensation provides benefits for surviving family

When employees suffer an injury on the job and have to miss work, they should not have to worry about whether they will be able to pay their bills. This was the reason that workers' compensation was instituted as an insurance to help cover missed work hours and pay for healthcare for Arizona workers who were either injured while doing their jobs or became ill as a direct result of their work. What happens, though, when the accident goes beyond injury and kills the worker? Thankfully, workers' compensation usually provides survivor benefits for eligible dependents as well.

In another state, just such a fatal work accident occurred when a 38-year-old construction worker was struck by a metal pipe weighing between approximately 2,500 pounds. Preliminary information suggests the pipe rolled off a truck and landed on the man. Other workers at the site administered first aid until emergency medical professionals arrived to transport him to the hospital, but reports suggest the man died at the scene despite these first aid attempts.

Join us at the Kids' Chance AZ Run/Walk this Saturday, March 4th!

Proud to sponsor the Kids' Chance Annual Phoenix 5K event on Saturday.  The race benefits the children of those severely injured or killed in work accidents.  For more information, please visit

Constructions companies must attempt to prevent work injuries

Construction sites in Arizona and other jurisdictions pose significant safety hazards to workers. For this very reason, many construction companies focus on doing more to prevent work injuries. When a workplace accident can result in serious injury or even death, it stands to reason that an employer should make sure safety precautions are followed at all times.

In another state, federal safety officials issued citations and penalties when they found that employers had neglected to ensure the safety of their workers. Not just one, but two companies were each handed a serious violation after a 2016 incident left a construction worker injured. An employee of the first company, DSI Mechanical, fell through a second-story hole at the construction site of the second company's -- Western Sugar – plant during an expansion project.

Tips for Arizona employees who have been injured on the job

Every job is different. Some jobs, like construction work, may have more obvious risks, but even office jobs can lead to unexpected illness or injury, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. Regardless of the type of work an Arizona employee spends his or days or nights doing, one thing remains universal: the prospect of being injured on the job and unable to pay bills is a scary one. The following tips, however, may help smooth the way should such an event occur.

The first thing to remember is to report any on-the-job injury as soon as possible. For the injured worker's own sake as well as for the good of other employees, it is important that any safety hazards on the job site are handled immediately. Additionally, ensuring a supervisor and/or the human resources department has the incident recorded as a work-related accident is very important in the workers' compensation process.

Workers' compensation helps with medical costs for work accidents

It goes without saying that some jobs are, in fact, riskier than others. In Arizona, just like every other state, sometimes work accidents are just that: accidents. However, when an employee is injured on the job after there have been past complaints regarding workplace safety, it stands to reason that OSHA might want to take a closer look.

In another state, work on a bridge has stopped while OSHA does just that. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is conducting an investigation after two men were injured when they fell 40 to 50 feet from scaffolding. The company, Abhe & Svoboda, voluntarily halted work for a period of time to allow the company to discuss safety with the employees while OSHA looks into the situation.

Company fined for machinery safety violations after 3 amputations

Industrial workers in Arizona trust employers to do their part in keeping employees safe. This includes everything from machinery safety and precautions to proper training and oversight. When a company fails to take the necessary steps to ensure employees' safety and prevent repeat accidents, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration typically steps in.

In another state, Alliance Laundry Systems was recently cited and fined by OSHA after the company experienced its third workplace injury in less than a year. Between Aug. 2015 and July 2016, three different employees lost a finger to amputation by the plant's machines. The most recent accident is said to have occurred after the company continued to use a hydraulic press without additional safety guards, despite the fact that the tip of an employee's middle finger had been cut off by the machine previously.

Careless workers may unintentionally cause construction accidents

Arizona construction sites can certainly be dangerous places, but this is why safety guidelines are put in place. It is the responsibility of a construction company to make sure that safety regulations are followed and workers are trained so that injurious construction accidents do not occur. Sadly, in a case from a different state, the accident turned out to be not just injurious but fatal.

While working at a construction site on Jan. 23, a 19-year-old construction worker was killed when she was crushed by the bucket of a backhoe. The operator of the backhoe claims he didn't see the woman at the dig site and accidentally dropped the bucket on top of her. She died at the scene.

OSHA declares workplace accident should not have happened

Training is a vital part of any Arizona industry. Instructing workers how to safely perform their duties is the responsibility of every employer. When that training is not provided, a workplace accident is practically inevitable.

For example, a man in another state was attempting to inflate and mount a rim wheel that was in multiple parts when a piece flew off and struck him in the head. The accident occurred on Oct. 31, 2016. The man succumbed to his injuries on Nov. 11. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration conducted an investigation and determined that his death was preventable.

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Jerome, Gibson, Stewart, Stevenson, Engle & Runbeck, P.C., provides experienced representation for workers' compensation cases in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa, Gilbert, Glendale, Peoria, Avondale, Casa Grande, Flagstaff, Prescott, Tucson and Yuma, and throughout Maricopa County, Pima County, Pinal County and Yavapai County, and all of Arizona.

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