Texas is the only state that allows employers to opt out of workers’ compensation insurance, and employees of these “non-subscriber” companies face the risk of serious accidents no matter which industry they work in. However, a non-subscriber employer is still liable for an employee’s injuries caused by a workplace accident.
According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), 4,585 workers were killed in work-related accidents in 2013. Accidents on construction sites caused 20 percent of these deaths and the leading causes of these fatalities were one of four types of accidents:
- Falls caused 36 percent of these deaths.
- Being struck by an object caused 10 percent of these deaths.
- Electrocution caused 8 percent of these deaths.
- Being caught between objects caused 2 percent of these deaths.
Seven Common Causes of Workplace Accidents
In Texas, employers have a duty to provide a safe working environment for their employees. Unfortunately that does not always happen, and employees are injured on the job no matter how careful they are. Common causes of these serious accidents include:
- Overexertion. These accidents are caused by pulling, lifting, pushing, holding, carrying, and throwing duties at work and could be prevented by proper training and equipment to avoid overexertion.
- Slips and falls. Workers can fall on slippery or damaged floors or because of objects and debris on the floor. Sadly, many of these accidents could be avoided if non-slip rugs, warning signs of wet surfaces, and training on keeping floors dry and free of debris were utilized.
- Falling from heights. These include falls from roofs, ladders, and stairways and can be caused by a slip and fall or faulty equipment. The use of proper safety equipment can often prevent these accidents.
- Falling objects. These are caused by objects not being stacked properly or being dropped by another employee. Storing materials in a safe manner could stop many of these accidents from happening.
- Vehicle crashes. Employees who drive for their job risk being a victim of a motor vehicle crash, sometimes with deadly results. Training in defensive driving can help prevent some of these accidents.
- Machine entanglement. When employees work with heavy equipment and machinery, their fingers or other body parts, hair, and clothing can get caught in the machinery. Providing protective equipment and training could prevent these serious accidents.
- Workplace hazards. Depending on the nature of the employee’s work, he could be exposed to dangerous chemicals or fires. Proper safety measures for use of hazardous materials and employee training are critical to avoid these types of accidents.
Workplace accidents can cause life-threatening injuries, such as brain damage, paralysis, burns, and internal organ damage, and fatalities. Fortunately, an injured worker may be entitled to compensation from his non-subscriber employer for his lost wages, medical bills, and more.
Were you injured in a work-related accident? Was a family member killed? Our compassionate and experienced legal team is here to help you understand your legal options and the compensation you could be entitled to. Start an online chat or call us at (817) 380-4888.