Every seven seconds, a worker gets injured on the job in our country, according to the National Safety Council. What are the most common injuries that these workers suffer in Oklahoma and elsewhere? An analysis released a few years ago by Travelers, a workers’ compensation insurance company, can help to answer that question.
According to Travelers, the company analyzed 1.5 million workers’ compensation benefits claims that were submitted between 2010 and 2014 for its 2016 Injury Impact Report. The company’s analysis of the data determined that, across all industries – including construction, oil and gas, manufacturing and retail – the five most commonly reported workplace injuries were:
|Type of Injury||Pct. of Claims|
|Strains and sprains||30%|
|Cuts or punctures||19%|
Even though eye injury was not among the top five injuries across all industries, the report noted that it was among the most common injuries in two specific industries: Construction and manufacturing.
Interestingly, the most common injuries were not the costliest injuries – in terms of the average cost per workers’ compensation claim. Instead, the report found that the five costliest injuries were:
|Type of Injury||Cost per Claim|
Out of the five most commonly reported workplace injuries, fractures had the highest average cost per claim ($42,500), while strains or sprains had the lowest ($17,000).
What Causes Workplace Injuries?
More recently, another workers’ compensation insurance company, Liberty Mutual, released its list of the leading causes of injuries in the workplace. The company based its 2018 Workplace Safety Index on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data showing events that caused workers to miss five days or more of work. It then ranked those events based on “total workers’ compensation costs” (in terms of billions of dollars). The list showed the most common causes of workplace injuries to be:
|Cause||Cost||Pct. of Total|
|Overexertion (outside sources)||$13.7||23.4%|
|Falls on same level||$11.2||19.2%|
|Falls to lower level||$5.9||10.0%|
|Struck by object or equipment||$5.3||9.1%|
|Other exertions / bodily reactions||$4.2||7.2%|
|Motor vehicle accidents||$2.1||3.6%|
|Slip or trip without fall||$2.3||3.9%|
|Caught in / compressed||$2.1||3.6%|
|Struck against object or equipment||$2.0||3.5%|
Of course, when looking at the most common injuries and the causes of those injuries, an important question to ask is what employers are doing to prevent injuries – or better yet, what are they failing to do? According to Safety + Health magazine, the most frequently cited Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) violations for the 2018 fiscal year were:
|Fall protection (general requirements)||7,270|
|Powered industrial trucks||2,294|
|Fall protection (training requirements)||1,982|
|Eye and face protection||1,536|
Hurt at Work? Our Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Can Help
If you recently suffered an injury on the job in Oklahoma City, Edmond or elsewhere in Oklahoma, contact Cain Law Office to learn about your rights and options, including the right to file for workers’ compensation benefits. For more than 20 years, we have protected the rights of injured workers and their loved ones throughout Oklahoma, including standing up to employers and insurance companies that try to minimize or deny valid claims. We can provide a free consultation today.