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Millions of U.S. employees face work-related injuries


Millions of U.S. employees face work-related injuries

For people in South Carolina and other states, on-the-job injuries continue to be a major issue in the private section. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that 3 million injuries occur in the United States each year. In the last 20 years, workplace injuries have gone down from around 6 million a year due to the increased focus and adherence to health and safety standards, but musculoskeletal problems such as carpel tunnel syndrome continue to affect a large number of workers in different sectors, including government jobs.

Statistics from reports on injury and fatality rates in different states show that there is an issue with under-reporting of workplace accidents. Texas has a workplace injury rate of 2.6 people for every 100 worker, but the state’s workplace fatality rate is 4.8 per 100,000 workers. The state’s injury rate is lower than the national average of 3.5 per 100 but higher than the national workplace fatality rate of 3.2 per 100,000. Statistics show a similar issue in Louisiana and the opposite problem in Vermont and Washington.

Workplace injuries and injuries result in $250 billion in costs each year. Workers’ compensation usually only takes care of 25 percent of the total costs of workplace injuries and illnesses. For workplace injuries, employees tend to miss an average of eight days. This number can be much longer for more severe injuries.

Employees in South Carolina may be eligible for workers’ compensation for medical expenses and time off from work resulting from workplace injuries. The amount of workers’ compensation an employee receives is often contingent on the level of injury as permanent disabilities are treated differently under South Carolina law. An attorney with experience in workers’ compensation claims may be able to help an injured worker to go through the process of filing for or fighting a claim.

Source: MarketWatch, “Work Is a Dangerous Place for Millions of Americans,” Quentin Fottrell, March 21, 2015