Workers’ Compensation: Warehouse Injuries Can Be Severe

Not all warehouse owners in California recognize the vital role employee safety plays in profitability. By establishing a safe work environment, productivity can be maximized, and increased insurance premiums can be avoided by limiting injuries that lead to workers’ compensation benefits claims. Injury-related lost work hours, repairs to equipment, and damaged stock can be avoided by taking safety seriously.

Warehouse workers can protect themselves from known hazards typically present in these environments by taking some safety precautions. Slip-and-trip accidents can be avoided by cleaning up any spills or leakages, and clearing walkways of debris and random objects can prevent trips. Using proper lifting techniques and not attempting to lift objects that are too heavy without help might avert musculoskeletal injuries such as back and shoulder problems due to muscle or tendon tears, sprains, and strains.

Some of the most severe warehouse injuries involve forklifts. These are often the result of uncertified operators. Workers on foot can be knocked over or crushed against shelves by untrained or negligent operators, and unsecured or unbalanced loads can fall from the forks onto workers below. Poorly stacked pallets or shelves can also cause falling-object accidents.

Fires pose significant hazards, and workers must be familiar with the location of fire extinguishers and emergency exits — which should never be blocked by boxes or other objects. While warehouse workers in California can take some precautions to prevent on-the-job injuries, accidents happen, and the financial consequences could be severe. Fortunately, the workers’ compensation insurance program provides coverage of medical expenses and lost wages. Additional benefits are typically awarded when injuries lead to disabilities, and an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can assist with claiming such benefits.