Overexertion – The Number One Work Injury
The workers’ compensation lawyers at Silverman, McDonald & Friedman assist employees throughout Delaware who were injured on the job. To learn more, schedule a free initial consultation in our Wilmington, Newark or Seaford offices.
Workplace injuries are all too common and can happen to anyone, whether you work behind a desk or behind the wheel of a truck. When you’re injured while performing your job, however, you’re likely eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, which should help cover your medical bills and lost wages.
Although there are many types of injuries, there is one that’s extremely common and crosses all lines of work – overexertion.
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What are overexertion injuries?
An overexertion injury happens when someone performs a task (or attempts to perform a task) that’s beyond his or her physical capabilities. A typical example is when people try to lift boxes that are too heavy for them, and hurt their backs. These injuries encompass a wide range of additional physical issues, including sprains, strains, and muscle tears. Overexertion can also cause symptoms of respiratory distress or dehydration.
Overexertion injuries are the leading cause of disabling injuries in the workplace, accounting for nearly 25 percent of injuries and costing businesses more than $13.5 billion annually.
What are the causes of overexertion injuries?
Overexertion injuries on the job can happen from many different kinds of work and tasks. They might happen due to poor training or instruction, unsafe working conditions, or repetitive motions (a cumulative injury).
A person can suffer an overexertion injury at home or anywhere, but following are the most common overexertion injuries that occur in the workplace:
- Lifting boxes or objects overhead
- Pushing or pulling boxes or crates
- Carrying heavy objects for extended periods
- Bending, standing, sitting, or being in an awkward position for extended periods
- Performing repetitive tasks (leading to repetitive stress injuries)
- Working in poorly ventilated areas
- Working in extreme weather
- Working while dehydrated or hungry
- Performing physical work too long without a break
As you see, overexertion-type injuries can vary widely, depending on the task or type of job involved.
What if I suffer an overexertion injury at work?
If you suffer an overexertion injury on the job, you may need time off work to recover. Depending on the severity of your injury, this could be from days to months. This can be financially devastating – who will pay your medical bills or cover your lost paychecks? This is why workers’ compensation is so important.
Ensure you file your claim properly from the beginning:
- Immediately notify your employer in writing of the injury or occupational disease and request medical services.
- Give notice of your claim promptly to the employer.
- If you can’t reach an agreement with your employer with regard to compensation, you can file a petition with the Office of Workers’ Compensation for a hearing before the Industrial Accident Board on the matters at issue. Forms can be obtained from the Office of Workers’ Compensation. Our attorneys can guide you through this entire process.
Do you have questions about your claim? The workers’ compensation attorneys at Silverman, McDonald & Friedman today can assist you. Our lawyers serve clients in the Wilmington, Seaford, and Newark areas. Call 302-888-2900 or fill out our contact form today.
Attorney Jeffrey S. Friedman joined Silverman, McDonald & Friedman in 2001. He graduated from Widener University School of Law, and is admitted to practice law in Delaware and Pennsylvania, and in several Federal Circuit courts. He areas of concentration include auto accident and workers’ compensation cases. Read more about Attorney Friedman here.