Warehouses are contained in big box stores, such as Lowes, Target, and Home Depot, and as separate facilities used to store and distribute inventory and other goods. While warehouse workers provide a vital service, their jobs can be hazardous. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), the fatality rate for warehouse workers is greater than the national average for all industries.
Why Do Warehouse Workers Suffer Workplace Injuries?
Workers face a variety of hazards while performing their duties in a warehouses, some violating OSHA’s safety standards. Causes of workplace injuries include:
- Forklifts. Forklifts are used throughout warehouses to move inventory in and out of the building or to other storage facilities. While they are useful for transporting heavy goods and materials, forklifts can be dangerous if workers are not properly trained in their use. Forklift turnovers are especially hazardous, causing a large portion of workers’ deaths. Another way workers are seriously injured is if the forklift driver does not see them and runs over them—sometimes with fatal results.
- Slip and fall injuries. Sawdust, debris, spilled liquids, uneven flooring, and poor lighting are a few slip and fall hazards that cause workers to suffer injuries.
- Falls from heights. Workers can suffer catastrophic injuries or death if they fall from a height, such as off a ladder or loading dock.
- Crushed between objects. If a forklift or other heavy machinery or object falls onto a worker, he can be crushed and suffer internal organ damage, crushed bones, spinal injuries, and traumatic brain injury—or death.
- Fires. Because of flammable gases and liquids, extension cords, and exposed wiring, fires are a danger in warehouses. Workers can suffer serious burns, disfigurement, and permanent scars.
- Overexertion. Workers often must spend long periods of time lifting heavy boxes and objects and working in awkward positions. Due to the overexertion and repetitiveness of some of the duties warehouse workers perform, they can suffer injuries like back, neck, and shoulder injuries that can cause chronic pain and limitations in their movements.
- Transportation crashes. Some warehouses provide trucks for their workers to transport inventory between buildings or locations. Workers can suffer serious injuries or die if involved in a wreck caused by a negligent driver.
If you suffered injuries on the construction site or at your warehouse job, you may be surprised to learn that your employer does not subscribe to a workers’ compensation plan. You need an attorney like the experienced legal team at the Hart Law Firm who understands your rights under Texas’ complicated non-subscriber employer laws. Contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation or call us directly at 817.380.4888.