Accidents at Work: Common types of accidents at work*

Angle grinder accidents

These accidents can occur where employees are untrained or inexperienced in operating an angle grinder. An angle grinder is used in many industries including welding, farming and crash repairs. These cases can be caused by the employer not providing proper training and/or safety equipment.

Asbestosis

The use of asbestos was permitted in the construction industry in Ireland for a number of years. Exposure to asbestos dust or fibres can lead to a variety of respiratory injuries including lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis. These injuries are complicated and it can take several years for symptoms to develop and be diagnosed. If you have been diagnosed with lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis you may be entitled to bring an accident at work personal injuries claim*.

Back injury at work

The number one reason an employee suffers a back injury is due to inadequate training and/or work equipment. Spinal cord injuries are very serious and in a lot of cases surgery is necessary. The most common back injuries include fractured vertebrae, herniated disks and soft tissue sprains.

Building site accidents

Building sites can be very dangerous and there is an obligation on your employer to minimise risks and put the relevant safety procedures in place. Injuries can be caused by falls from scaffolding, faulty machinery, falling objects and/or lifting heavy objects.

Burns

Burns can be caused by chemicals, extreme heat, electrical equipment and/or machinery. Burns can cause permanent injuries which lead to constant pain, distress and psychological symptoms. It is your employer’s responsibility to provide you with a safe place of work.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

This is an injury which affects the wrists and hands. The symptoms include numbness and tingling in the hands or fingers. This injury can be caused due to vibrating tools, pressure to the hands, bending of the wrist and/or heaving lifting.

Crane accidents

A crane accident can occur to an operator, ground workers loading or unloading a crane, and/or any individuals in the vicinity of the crane. One of the most common crane accidents involves them colliding with overhead power lines. Other common crane accidents include the following:-

  • Ground subsidence;
  • Miscommunication between operator and ground workers;
  • Improper loading or unloading of the crane;
  • Inadequate training and/or safety procedures; and
  • Lifting loads that are too heavy for the crane.

Digger accidents

Digger accidents are mainly caused by human error or mechanical fault. Working closely with this type of machinery comes with inherent risks. Due to the heavy nature of the work involved, these types of accidents can cause catastrophic injuries. In attributing blame between human error and mechanical fault, one must consider the age of the digger and/or whether it was misused prior to causing the accident.

Farm accidents

Farm accidents account for the highest number of workplace fatalities in Ireland every year. The farm manager/employer must ensure all employees are provided with a safe place to work. The injuries tend to be life changing and therefore you need expert solicitors to guide you through the process in order to achieve the best result.

Hearing loss

The right protection can avoid these injuries. Hearing loss is a permanent injury and one which can be avoided by the employer putting personal protection equipment (PPE) and training in place. In a workplace setting, the damage typically occurs gradually. Some of these conditions include:-

  • Tinnitus – a ringing or buzzing sound in the ear;
  • Occupational deafness – the inner ear has cell damage that causes deafness; and
  • Acoustic shock syndrome – this type of injury occurs due to an intense sound causing damage to the ear, for example an explosion.

Industrial deafness

Industrial deafness may only appear some years after the initial workplace exposure. For this reason the injured individual can attribute their hearing loss to ageing rather than the workplace. The signs of industrial deafness include an inability to hear conversations in a crowd and difficulty hearing on the telephone. This type of injury normally occurs due to an intense impulse sound that causes damage to the ear. It is commonly referred to as Acoustic Shock Syndrome.

Industrial disease

You may be able to make an accident at work claim if you have been injured as a result of health and safety procedures not being followed. In some instances you may even be able to claim if you caused the accident, for instance if your injuries were made worse because of a piece of faulty equipment.

Lacerations at work

Lacerations at work can be caused by chemicals, extreme heat, electrical equipment and/or machinery. Lacerations can cause permanent injuries which lead to constant pain, distress and psychological symptoms. It is your employer’s responsibility to provide you with a safe workplace.

Manual handling claims

These types of injuries are mainly caused by heavy lifting and can be avoided with the correct manual handling training. Pain to your back, neck and shoulders are common symptoms of this injury.

Nerve injury

A nerve injury can be caused by sudden trauma or repeated pressure and/or strain on the affected area. It is a long-lasting condition causing numbness and pain in the area affected by the injury.

Repetitive Strain Injury

The employer’s failure to address the employee’s work station and work procedures can cause these injuries over a number of years. The employee performing repetitive tasks which are set up incorrectly is a hazard that could have been avoided. These injuries include tennis elbow/golfers’ elbow, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, ulnar neuropathy, vibration white finger and hand-arm vibration syndrome.

Respiratory injuries

Asthma can be put down to genetics, however, many people do not realise work related asthma can be caused by the air pollution in your work environment. If you are exposed to dust, vapour gases or fumes you may have a case against your employer for causing work related asthma. This illness can range from minor to severe and your employer should not be exposing you to this environment without the relevant protection.

Scarring

Scarring can be caused by burns and/or lacerations. These injuries are mainly caused by chemicals, extreme heat, electrical equipment and/or machinery. It is your employer’s responsibility to provide you with a safe place of work.

Slip and fall claims

Many people who slip, fall or trip believe that the accident was their own fault, but in truth most accidents could have been prevented if the employers put the right safety procedures in place. These types of accidents can cause a variety of injuries.

Tinnitus

Tinnitus is a high-pitched ringing, buzzing and/or humming in the ears. The exposure to excessive noise can cause hearing loss and permanent tinnitus. An employer is obliged to put personal protective equipment (PPE), for instance earplugs, in place to avoid these types of injuries.

Wet floor accident

A wet floor can cause an employee to slip, trip or fall. This can cause a variety of injuries such as whiplash. In most cases these types of injuries could have been prevented by your employer with the right safety procedures in place.

At HOMS Assist we have over fifty years’ experience in workplace injury claims.  If you have suffered a workplace injury and you are in any doubt about whether you can bring a personal injuries claim you can contact one of our experienced advisors who will be happy to assist you.

 

*In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.

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