Workers in various industries often perform tasks that require lifting heavy objects. The physical demands of lifting can lead to serious injuries, impacting a worker’s health and ability to perform their job.
Awareness of this issue can reduce the risk of these injuries and ensure the well-being of New Jersey’s workforce.
What are heavy lifting injuries?
Heavy lifting can result in a range of injuries. These injuries often occur due to improper lifting techniques, lack of training or inadequate safety measures. Workers might experience immediate pain or develop chronic conditions over time. It is important for employees to receive proper training in lifting techniques and have access to safety equipment to minimize these risks.
Heavy lifting can cause musculoskeletal injuries that impact the neck, back, arms and shoulders. Lower body injuries are also possible. Spinal injuries can result from excessive back stress, leading to pinched nerves and herniated disks. Muscle injuries range from minor tears to severe damage. Hernias, often requiring surgical intervention, may occur after lifting without proper abdominal support.
Musculoskeletal injuries in the workplace are a significant financial burden for individual workers and their employers. Annually, these injuries cost between $45 and $54 billion. The expenses associated with these injuries are often substantial, encompassing medical treatment costs and productivity losses.
How can workers’ compensation help?
In New Jersey, workers’ compensation is a vital resource for employees who suffer injuries while performing their job duties. This system supports injured workers, paying for medical treatment, lost wages and rehabilitation services.
Workers’ compensation insurance covers all necessary medical care related to the injury. The injured worker does not have to pay out of pocket for medical expenses. Additionally, if the injury results in time away from work, the worker can receive temporary disability benefits. These benefits help support the worker financially during their recovery period. Workers’ compensation also offers rehabilitation services. These services aim to help injured workers recover and return to work.
Heavy lifting can be dangerous for workers, especially if there is a lack of training and access to safety equipment. Addressing heavy lifting injuries safeguards employees and contributes to a more productive and sustainable working environment.