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California Board of Legal Specialization | Certified Specialist in Workers' Compensation Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization
Law Offices of Vincent J. Scotto, III, Attorneys & Lawyers Employment & Workers Compensation, San Mateo, CA

San Mateo Workplace Injury Law Blog

Three workers hurt in California construction accident

There are many construction projects underway throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and residents of San Mateo may see new developments popping up as they commute through Northern California. Just across the water, a large construction project is in the works in Freemont that drivers can see from Interstate 680. Unfortunately, however, that project was also the location of a dangerous accident that caused three workers to suffer injuries.

The incident occurred when a rebar tower fell while the workers were placing a wrap on it. The tower was estimated to weigh around 1,000 pounds and all three of the victims were taken to local hospitals for treatment. While two of the victims suffered minor injuries, the third victim suffered critical injuries and was being treated at a trauma center in Santa Clara.

A denied workers' compensation claim can be challenged

To a worker who suffers an injury while performing the duties of their job, seeking approval for workers' compensation benefits may seem incredibly straightforward. A California resident in this situation may notify their employer of their injury, seek medical help for their ailments, and then file a claim for compensation for the period of time that they are unable to do their job. However, upon receiving a response regarding their claim, the worker may find that no benefits will be provided for their injury.

There are many different reasons a workers' compensation claim may be denied. Some of them are because of certain important phases of the workers' compensation process, such as a denial based on a worker waiting too long to seek benefits for their workplace injury. Other denials may be based on the alleged failure of workers to provide enough evidence to show their injuries did, in fact, happen at work or while the workers were doing their jobs.

What is chronic pain and how does it develop?

Pain can last for a short period of time or it can endure for months or even years. When a California resident suffers from pain that lasts for at least three months, their soreness may be classified as chronic pain. Chronic pain can develop from a number of causes, some of which are related to workplace accidents and injuries.

Chronic pain can affect any part of a person's body but it commonly afflicts an individual's joints and back. It can begin when a person suffers a specific injury, such as a fall at work or a pulled muscle from lifting a heavy load. It may also develop if a person performs physical tasks over and over in the course of their work and their body simply wears down from the effort.

What kinds of accidents happen at construction sites?

Construction workers put their skills and experience to the test each day that they arrive at building sites. Because of their hard work, individuals throughout San Mateo get to move into new and renovated homes, get to open their businesses in new structures, and get to see their communities grow through new building projects. However, despite improvements in construction site safety and required protocols for keeping these workers safe, accidents are common at construction sites.

One of the most common types of accidents that can happen is a fall. Falls happen for many reasons; a worker may lose their footing from a high scaffolding and may not be properly tied down, or they may trip and fall into a hole dug out for a new structure's foundation. Falls can sometimes be life-threatening, but are often very preventable when proper safety precautions are taken.

Fighting for individuals after workplace accidents and injuries

The inability to do one's job due to a workplace accident does not preclude a person from staying current on their mortgage, paying their utilities, and somehow coming up with the money to pay for the medical expenses they may incur as a result of their injury. A California resident who is unfortunate enough to suffer such an incident may quickly find themselves struggling to stay ahead of their financial responsibilities.

Workers who do their jobs right and still suffer harm at the hands of their employers should not see themselves and their families suffer because of the loss of their incomes. Getting hurt at work is an unfortunate reality for too many people who are then thrown into the precarious balance of providing for their loved ones and healing from their harms.

California OSHA Plan protects workers from unique harms

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is a federal entity that promulgates rules and regulations regarding how workers should be protected from the many forms of harm that they may encounter at their work sites. The various states, including California, may adopt their own protective standards to address the safety needs of the men and women who work within their borders and not surprisingly, the California State Plan under OSHA covers more forms of harm than the federal standards.

For example, California workers who are covered by the State Plan are protected from heat and noise exposure. Both of these issues may cause immediate harm to workers or may create health problems for workers if they are exposed to them over time.

Worker critically hurt in California construction accident

A number of regulations are in place to keep California construction workers safe when they are on the job. Those regulations can involve, for example, the use of safety equipment to ensure workers' protection from worksite dangers and the need for special training to teach construction workers about the hazards they may face while performing their duties. However, despite the presence these and other regulations, construction workers in California still suffer debilitating work-related accidents. A recent incident in the state highlights this fact.

The accident happened in the morning when a worker was standing in a manhole. The manhole was located in a dug-out section of the residential construction site. The victim was allegedly hit by a truck that was traveling through that section of the construction zone and as a result of the crash the victim suffered injuries to his upper body.

A workplace injury may develop over time

A sudden accident may cause a person to suffer a serious and debilitating injury. Such an abrupt occurrence that leads to a long-term recovery may keep a San Mateo resident away from their job as they recuperate. If the accident happened while they were at work or while performing work-related duties for their employer, they may be entitled to workers' compensation.

However, not all work-related injuries happen in moments of carelessness, negligence or mistake. Some workers suffer significant harm from doing exactly what their employers ask of them. When workers perform repetitive actions and do not have the proper tools or equipment to safely undertake those actions, they may develop repetitive stress injuries.

What is an occupational illness?

Any California resident who has suffered from a bout of the common cold may be able to generally describe what an illness is. Most may claim that an illness is a condition that affects a person's body due to the invasion of a bacterial or viral element into them. Different illnesses may cause individuals to suffer different symptoms, but in most cases the illnesses that individuals pick up in their daily lives resolve themselves without significant medical intervention.

An occupational illness has commonalities with and differences from regular illnesses. Whereas an occupational illness is also caused by a person's interaction of a foreign substance or chemical, what makes it unique from other illnesses is that the exposure occurred at the individual's place of work. Encounters with chemical, biological and substances can cause individuals to suffer illnesses and harm.

An employee has rights when it comes to OSHA regulations

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, better known as OSHA, is a governmental regulatory body that maintains standards for the safety measures that employers provide to their workers. Through OSHA a California worker has rights and a mechanism for pursuing help when they suffer a preventable workplace injury or accident.

For example, when a worker is hired into a particular job they have the right to be trained. While often training is considered the imparting of knowledge upon a person so that they can perform a task, under OSHA a worker's training must also impart safety education so that the worker can do their tasks without causing themselves or others injury.

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The Law Offices of Vincent J. Scotto, III
700 South Claremont Street
San Mateo, CA 94402

Telephone: 650-375-2301
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The Law Offices of Vincent J. Scotto, III
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