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Kansas City Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Amazon accused of denying on-the-job injury claims

The convenience offered by the on-line retail giant Amazon created enormous wealth for its founder and CEO. Customers all across the country, including here in Missouri, may not be aware that the company has also been accused of unfairly denying the claims of workers who have suffered an on-the-job injury. Many have spoken of their fight for medical and workers' comp benefits.

Employees claim that the company often refuses to acknowledge the seriousness of work-related injuries and will deny benefits for valid claims. One woman who worked for a fulfillment center reported that she experienced nerve damage from work-related carpal tunnel syndrome. She sought care from the on-site health clinic on multiple occasions and was advised to return to duty. She was finally forced to undergo surgery to relieve her symptoms, but the company's workers' compensation insurer fought her claim for more than a year before approving the procedure. 

Construction worker suffers serious internal injuries in accident

With the advent of spring, many states, including Missouri, are gearing up to begin repairs and new projects. Thousands of workers who were laid off have looked forward to a return to the job and the opportunity to provide income for their families. Unfortunately, it's also the time of year when an accident can result in a construction worker suffering serious, even debilitating, injuries.

Just days after returning to work, one man was on the site of a planned bridge collapse when he was horribly injured. According to the report, the 42-year-old man was engaged in electrical work under an overpass that was scheduled for demolition. Another worker for the same subcontractor was moving a construction vehicle at the same time. For reasons that are yet unclear, the truck backed into the man, knocking him to the ground. The vehicle then ran over the victim before the driver was aware of what happened.

Investigation launched in response to fatal work accident

Those whose occupations involve industrial environments face hazardous conditions on a regular basis. Experienced workers take as many precautions as possible, but not every work accident can be foreseen and prevented. When these serious incidents occur, Missouri workers -- or their surviving families -- may be entitled to seek assistance from the workers' compensation program.

Emergency responders received a report of a workplace accident at a steel mill plant. When they arrived on scene, they discovered a male victim who was unresponsive. Though they applied life-saving techniques, their efforts were unsuccessful. The 55-year-old male was pronounced deceased at the location.

Man suffers traumatic arm injury in industrial accident

In Missouri and elsewhere, the industrial field can pose serious risks of injuries for even experienced employees. Heavy machinery and a fast paced work environment can set the stage for a devastating injury under the wrong conditions. Recently, one man suffered a traumatic arm injury that may cripple his ability to work in the future.

On a recent Friday morning, a time when many workers are anticipating the end of long work week, emergency responders received a call concerning an injured employee at an industrial manufacturer. When police arrived, they discovered fellow employees attempting to apply lifesaving efforts to a severely injured man. It was determined that the 66-year-old man was operating machinery when, for reasons that are yet unclear, his arm was snagged by the gears and dragged into the machine.

Calls for tougher federal safety regulations in banning chemicals

There are various federal agencies charged with protecting the well-being of consumers and workers. Several years ago, the Environmental Protection Agency was purportedly preparing to ban the sale of a potentially lethal chemical. Unfortunately, the EPA scaled back the reach of its ban, and critics claim that workers' lives are at risk without improved federal safety regulations. Missouri workers who are exposed to certain paint removers could be harmed without further regulatory actions.

According to an investigation conducted in 2015 by the Center for Public Integrity, approximately 56 people have died since 1980 after exposure to methylene chloride, an ingredient in some paint removers. The majority of those deaths occurred on the job. A few years ago, the EPA was reportedly working on restricting almost all sales of the chemical, including from suppliers to workplaces. It is unclear why the ban is limited only to retailers at this time.

Outside employee victim of fatal work accident

Those who work in industrial and manufacturing plants face many hazards on the job. Even highly skilled and experienced employees can suffer serious or even fatal injuries in a work accident. Missouri workers who are employed in these fields are aware to the potentially dangerous nature of their occupation and strive to take precautions to protect themselves and others.

Recently, police and emergency crews were called to the site of a meat manufacturing plant. According to the report, a 55-year-old man from another company was on site in order to repair a forklift. When other employees arrived on scene, they found the victim underneath the forklift with no discernible signs of life. The workers used a second machine to move the first forklift and free the man.

19-year-old man died after forklift accident at building site

No matter one's age or experience, working in the construction business can be inherently dangerous. A building site employs the use of heavy machinery that can lead to potentially deadly incidents, including a fatal forklift accident. Missouri workers who have limited experience in this occupation may face an increased risk of suffering a serious injury.

Recently, emergency workers and investigators with the local Occupational Safety and Health Administration responded to a call concerning a serious accident that occurred at a building site. According to the preliminary report, a 19-year-old man was engaged as a spotter for another worker operating a forklift. The machine was being used to move a load of roofing materials for an apartment complex under construction.

Paper company facing hefty fines after OSHA safety inspection

While the manufacturing industry can be a hazardous employment field, most companies strive to ensure their workers' safety. One way to reinforce the importance of providing a safe working environment is through inspections conducted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). These regular inspections are conducted in the hopes of preventing serious accidents that can severely impair Missouri workers' ability to provide for themselves and their families. 

Recently, inspectors from a local OSHA office conducted an inspection of a paper manufacturing company. By the time the inspection was completed, the company was assessed an estimated $303,657 in proposed fines for safety violations. Officials cited numerous deficiencies that could result in serious or even fatal injuries.

Firefighter cancer rate often cited as 67 percent higher

Those who dedicate their lives to saving the lives and property of others often pay a high price. While firefighters are hailed as heroes in their local communities, there are hidden hazards they face that are not openly discussed. Sadly, work-related cancer has likely affected more than a few Missouri firefighters.

According to studies, the cancer rate among firefighters varies between an estimated 36 to 67 percent. This figure may be more surprising as those who are selected as paid firefighters are among the healthiest individuals who undergo stringent physical fitness assessments before they are hired. This guarantees that those who are selected are considered physically fit enough to handle the rigors of the job. While many may believe that the gear these professionals wear provides adequate protection, in reality, it still allows air flow to the skin, thereby permitting exposure to the pollutants that are released in the high temperatures that accompany fires.

Highway project stalled after death of construction worker

The building of the country's infrastructure takes a toll on public funding, time and the hard labor of employees. Unfortunately, some employees pay the highest price and either suffer serious or even fatal injuries on the job. There have been many Missouri families whose lives have been forever altered by a serious construction worker accident.

One family is now faced with mourning the loss of a loved one after another construction worker died in the building of a highway that has already taken the lives of three other workers since construction began in 2015. The latest incident occurred earlier this month as workers were attempting to move drainage piping. Employees were hoisting the 20-foot section when the pipe broke free and struck a worker in the head. The unidentified man was transported for emergency medical treatment. Sadly, he could not be saved and was pronounced deceased at the medical facility.

Kelly Law Office, P.C. • 134 N. Water St. • Liberty, MO 64068
Map and Directions • Phone: 816-760-2174 • Fax: 816-760-2001

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