We Help Workers Who Have Suffered a Hand Injury Collect Maximum Benefits
Hand injuries in the workplace are common. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that more than one million workers visit the emergency room due to serious hand injuries each year. Workers in almost every industry are at risk for hand injuries, which may be caused by cuts, blunt force trauma, or overuse. The Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. help workers with all types of hand injuries get the benefits they deserve.
Employers Must Provide Hand Protection
Hand injuries may occur despite an employer or employee’s best efforts to stay safe. However, they typically happen due to a disregard for safety precautions. According to the BLS, approximately 70 percent of workers who suffered a hand injury were not wearing gloves at the time of their accident and the remaining 30 percent were wearing the wrong type of gloves for the job.
Employers must provide employees with the appropriate hand protection depending on the task to be performed and other relevant factors as defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). They are required to do so whenever employees are exposed to the following hazards:
- chemical or thermal burns;
- harmful substances that may absorbed by the skin;
- harmful temperature extremes;
- severe cuts, lacerations, or abrasions; and
- sharp objects.
Common Types of Hand Injuries
Most work-related hand injuries are minor and require little to no medical attention. However, sometimes workers may suffer serious hand injuries that require surgery and time off from work; these injuries may be covered by workers’ compensation. Our Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers have represented workers with all types of hand injuries, including:
- Lacerations – Workers may suffer deep cuts to their hand when working with sharp objects or tools.
- Fractures/broken bones – Fractures or broken bones may occur as a result of a fall or blunt force trauma accident.
- Burns – Workers may sustain chemical, electrical or thermal burn injuries to their hands depending on what type of substance they are working with, including corrosive substances, electrical wires, fire, steam, and grease.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome – This is a type of repetitive motion injury, caused by compression of the median nerve in the wrist, that can cause pain, swelling, and numbness in the hand.
- Crushing injuries – Crushing injuries to the hand may occur when the hand becomes smashed between two objects, such as a vehicle and the wall or a piece of equipment and the floor.
- Puncture wounds – Workers may suffer puncture wounds to the hand, which can be caused by knives, needles, or other work tools.
- Avulsion fractures – This type of fracture occurs when a tendon or ligament in the hand pulls away from the bone, tearing a piece of the bone in the process.
- Amputations – A finger or hand may become detached from the body in cases of traumatic injury.
- Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) – Also known as vibration white finger, or jackhammer syndrome, HAVS occurs as a result of using vibrating hand-held equipment.
How to Prevent Workplace Hand Injuries
Employers and employees can work together to prevent hand injuries. OSHA recommends that employers take the following safety precautions to protect employees from hand injuries at work:
- Provide workers with the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) such as cut and puncture-resistant gloves, flash suits, and vibration dampers.
- Train workers on the hazards associated with workplace tools, machinery, and chemicals.
Workers’ Compensation for Hand Injuries in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania employees who suffer injuries at work may be eligible for workers’ compensation. Under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, employees must report their injuries to their employer and file a claim within 120 days of their accident. Injured workers may receive various types of workers’ compensation benefits, including payment for reasonable and necessary medical expenses, lost wages, and specific loss benefits. It is advisable to contact a local attorney for specific advice regarding your case as the laws on this vary by state.
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Attorneys at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Help Workers Obtain Benefits for Hand Injuries
If you suffered a hand injury at work, contact a Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Our attorneys have over 40 years of experience and can help you obtain the benefits to which you are entitled. Please complete our online contact form or call us at 888-PITT-LAW to arrange a free consultation.
We proudly represent workers in Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania, including those in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, and Philadelphia County, as well as in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester and Wynnewood.