Losing any part of your body in an amputation injury would be physically and psychologically traumatic. It would also be life-changing. This type of injury can affect what you do as a profession and can have a significant impact on your personal life as well. Sadly, in Nebraska, workplace amputation injuries are on the rise.
According to an article published earlier this year, in 2018, there were 42 workers' compensation claims for amputation injuries made in Nebraska. That may not seem like a lot when you look at the entire working population in the state, but it is a significant number of people whose lives changed forever in a matter of seconds.
In what occupations are such injuries most commonly seen?
Amputation injuries most often occur in work environments where employees regularly use heavy machinery. A few examples of particularly dangerous work equipment include:
- Power presses
- Food slicers
- Drill presses
- Milling machines
- Trash compactors
- Certain hand tools
Using these machines day in and day out presents a real danger to those operating them. However, injuries do not just happen during operation; they can also occur when performing maintenance on these machines.
What OSHA is doing about this problem
Occupational Safety and Health Administration representatives believe that accurate reporting will go a long way in reducing the number of amputation injuries occurring each year. When such injuries do happen, employers must report them to OSHA within 24 hours. That does not seem to be happening in the majority of cases, however. In Nebraska in 2018, people only reported 65% of amputation injury cases in the requested time frame. Failure to report, in a timely manner, places other employees at risk of suffering similar injuries.
OSHA has made available a number of resources to help employers protect their employees. Some of them include:
- Compliance assistance
- Free consultation program
- Various other safety and health programs
OSHA has also made it quite simple to report workplace injuries. One can file such reports online, allowing for a quick response time.
If you are the victim of a workplace amputation injury
If you have suffered an amputation injury while on the job, you may seek compensation for your losses by pursuing a workers' compensation claim with your employer and workers' comp insurance provider. Such claims do not always receive approval, even if you think you've done everything right and your injury was most definitely job-related. With assistance, you can do what is necessary to seek fair coverage for your losses.