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Industrial Accidents

Industrial Accidents Lawyers in Fresno

Industrial workplaces such as factories, warehouses, chemical plants, and refineries have a particularly high rate of injury compared to other workplaces. The injuries sustained after an industrial accident are often severe, limiting or preventing employees from doing their jobs. By filing a workers’ compensation claim, industrial workers have an opportunity to be fairly compensated for an injury. The attorneys at Berry, Smith & Bartell have helped injured workers throughout the Fresno area obtain compensation for medical care and lost wages. We have also helped represent injured workers before the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board when their claims are denied or they are awarded less compensation than they deserve.

If you suffered a work-related injury or illness, contact our licensed industrial accident lawyers in Fresno for a legal consultation at no cost. We can evaluate your situation and determine the legal options available to you. Our firm takes on all cases on contingency. This means there are no fees involved unless we help you recover the compensation you and your family rightfully deserve.

Schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation today by calling 1-800-848-6288.

Causes of Industrial Accidents

There are many hazardous or dangerous conditions that threaten the health and safety of industrial workers in the workplace.

Industrial accidents can occur due to the following factors:

Unsafe Working Conditions

Unsafe working conditions are a leading cause of industrial accidents. There are many factors that create unsafe working conditions, including defective equipment, tools, materials and machines on the jobsite. Other examples include:

  • Inadequate safety devices
  • Poor ventilation or lighting
  • Dangerous layouts
  • Improperly-guarded equipment
  • Unsafe storage of materials

Unsafe Acts of Workers

Industrial accidents can happen as a result of certain acts of other workers on the jobsite. These acts may be due to inexperience, lack of knowledge or inadequate training. Unsafe acts can include: 

  • Failing to use protective equipment or safety attire
  • Operating machinery or equipment without the authority to do so
  • Carelessly throwing tools or materials around
  • Removing safety devices
  • Failing to obey OSHA safety protocols
  • Working at unsafe speeds (too fast or too slow)
  • Working while under the influence of drugs or alcohol on the job
  • Causing distractions or engaging in horseplay

Other causes of industrial accidents can include falling objects, industrial fires, chemical plant explosions, oil field expositions, toxic exposure or tunnels caving in during mining excavations.

Many of the top workplace safety citations issued in the workplace in 2017 were for communication hazards, respiratory protection, machine guarding, electrical design and powered industrial trucks, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

If you or a loved one was injured in an industrial accident, it is in your best interest to contact an attorney who understands the laws and regulations about workers' compensation benefits. A knowledgeable Fresno industrial accident lawyer can review your case and explain how he or she can help you pursue the benefits you deserve.  

Fill out our Free Case Evaluation form right now.

Common Industrial Accident Injuries

Injuries from industrial accidents are often more serious than other types of workplace accident injuries. For example, workers at chemical plants or refineries have a greater chance of being exposed to chemicals and dust particles that can start a fire and cause explosions that could be life-threatening. According to the Department of Labor, two out of every 1,000 industrial workers will lose their lives in a workplace accident.

Other common industrial injuries could include:

  • Broken bones
  • Burn injuries
  • Electrocution injuries
  • Lacerations
  • Loss of limbs
  • Muscle strain or spasm
  • Neck or spine injury
  • Scarring or disfigurement
  • Traumatic brain injury

In many cases, industrial workers can suffer from severe or fatal illnesses like lung cancer, asbestosis or mesothelioma from exposure to toxic chemicals, gases and hazardous materials such as asbestos. These are known as occupational diseases that happen over an extended period of time in the workplace.

Repetitive work activities over a period of time can also cause cumulative or repetitive trauma injuries. Industrial workers can develop carpal tunnel syndrome from repetitive hand motions, strong gripping or excessive use of vibrating tools. Loss of hearing can be caused by workers being exposed to loud noises on a consistent basis. 

Eye injuries or vision loss can also be caused by a worker’s exposure to flying debris, chemical burns or falling objects. Even tasks such as lifting heavy objects from below the knees or bending over at the waist can cause workers to suffer long-term back injuries.

Suffering from any of these work-related injuries or illnesses may qualify you for workers’ compensation benefits. Our trusted Fresno industrial accident attorneys can determine if you are entitled to compensation and manage every aspect of your claim to obtain the benefits you need during your recovery.

Call Berry, Smith & Bartell at 1-800-848-6288 for a free consultation.

Types of Industrial Accident Cases

The industrial accident lawyers in Fresno at our firm can handle several different types of industrial accident cases for injured workers. These include situations involving:

  • Slips and falls – Slip and fall accidents are a common occurrence in industrial workplaces. Uneven surfaces, loose floorboards, waxed or wet floors and unsecured ladders or handrails can increase the risk of workers slipping and falling.
  • Defective tools or equipment – When tools or industrial equipment malfunction, workers can sustain serious injuries to the head, eyes, face and body. A defect in design or manufacturing of heavy machinery can be particularly dangerous for workers. These issues can cause serious harm, including crushing injuries. 
  • Mining accidents – Industrial mines have one of the highest fatality rates of any industry. Using constant heavy digging machinery and being exposed to dangerous gases and chemicals increases the risk of workers being in a mining accident or developing an occupational disease.
  • Falling objects – These accidents can happen when items are improperly positioned while stationary or not restrained while being moved. Workers on the ground can be hit with falling objects at elevated heights, causing significant injuries.
  • Chemical burns or exposure – When chemicals are not properly contained, handled or labeled, chemical burns and exposure accidents can happen. Corrosive chemicals can cause severe burn injuries to the skin or eyes and exposure to chemical hazards can result in nerve damage.
  • Refinery explosions – Refinery explosions occur when workers are inadequately trained or fail to contain hazardous materials, causing serious harm to others and property damage.

In these types of accidents, the cost of hospitalization, surgeries, physical and occupational therapy, rehabilitation, and medicines can reach into the thousands. This is why it is imperative you retain the services of a skilled and aggressive industrial accident attorney in Fresno so you can obtain the benefits you deserve.

Complete our Free Case Evaluation form so we can start reviewing your case.

Workers’ Compensation After an Industrial Accident

All California employers, including industrial companies, must provide workers’ compensation benefits to employees who sustain a work-related injury or illness. State law also requires employers to establish, implement and maintain an injury and illness prevention program (IIPP) to help identify and evaluate workplace hazards, among other safety practices.

If you have been injured while working, you should get immediate medical treatment from your employer’s medical provider network. This means you must see an approved physician within that network to treat any injury or illness that happens at work. However in emergency situations, you can receive medical care from any of the Fresno hospitals in the area. 

Soon after your accident, you should report your injury to your employer. You could lose your right to obtain workers’ compensation benefits if you wait to give a written notice to your employer within 30 days after your injury. It can also make your employer or its insurance company suspicious if you decide to wait to report your injury or delay any medical care needed. He or she may think your injury or illness is not as serious as you claim.

Your employer will then give you a workers’ compensation claim form to fill out within one working day after reporting your injury. Under the employee section, you must include certain details of your accident such as the date of your injury, where the injury happened and the injuries you sustained. You have up to one year from the day of your accident to file a claim. The form then needs to be given back to your employer so it can be completed and sent to its workers' compensation insurance company.

Once the form is submitted, your employer’s insurance company must pay for your medical care, up to $10,000 in expenses, while your claim is being investigated by a claims administrator. If you have not received a denial letter within 90 days, you can consider your claim to be approved.

Missing work after an industrial accident may make you eligible for temporary disability benefits which are equal to two-thirds of the pre-tax wages you earned before your injury or illness. After being approved, the insurance company must begin paying these benefits within 14 days after learning about your injury and your temporary disability, which is determined by your treating physician.

Permanent disability benefits are also available if your injury is permanent and prevents you from working or causes you to earn less money because of the limitations from your disability. Your treating physician must submit a report to the claims administrator detailing your permanent disability. Benefits can then begin within 14 days after your temporary disability benefits end.

Workers’ compensation claims can be complex. If you need help filing a claim or believe you received less benefits than you deserve, seek legal assistance from a qualified Fresno workers’ compensation attorney. Our firm can thoroughly research and investigate your claim on your behalf.

We look forward to helping you. Call 1-800-848-6288 today.

Contact Berry, Smith & Bartell for Legal Help Now

If you were injured in a workplace accident for any reason, do not hesitate to contact us to discuss your case and review your legal options. There are certain deadlines to meet when filing a workers’ compensation claim to get the benefits you need.

Our dependable industrial accident lawyers in Fresno can guide you through the entire claims process to answer any questions, prepare and submit documents in a timely manner and pursue fair compensation.

Our case consultation is always free and comes with no obligation to you. We also only work on a contingency fee basis. There are no upfront costs or legal fees unless we help you obtain compensation for your case.

For a free case evaluation with Berry, Smith & Bartell, a Professional Law Corporation call 1-800-848-6288 today!

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