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Falls and brain injuries in the workplace

While some industries face a higher risk for suffering a brain injury at work, any unsafe work environment could be hazardous to an employee's health. Where safety hazards are present, a traumatic brain injury could occur.

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 20 percent of workplace injuries that result in TBI occur due to falls when an object is not in the correct place or a surface is slick or uneven. Along with motor vehicle accidents, falls are one of the leading causes of TBI deaths in the U.S.

Some industries that face increased risk for TBI are agriculture, construction, forestry, transportation and emergency medical services. Employees in these industries and others may suffer a TBI after equipment and machinery accidents, slips and falls, exposure to toxic chemicals and falling objects. Workers can take precautions to avoid injuries by wearing the appropriate gear like hard hats, closed shoes and gloves.

Reporting dangers and signs of neglect to supervisors can also reduce the risk of injuries, and all employees should be aware of any safety issues. Workers who drive company vehicles can prevent accidents by getting enough rest and not giving in to distractions while driving.

Workers who suffer a traumatic brain injury or develop an illness because of work conditions will likely need to file for workers' compensation to receive benefits while unable to work. Depending on the severity of the injury, one may even need long-term or permanent benefits. It is sometimes difficult for workers to receive the compensation they deserve after a serious workplace accident occurs, so employees are entitled to contact a lawyer to make sure their best interests are met.

Source: BrainInjuryInstitute.org, "Workplace Accident", November 03, 2014

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