The risks for a workplace injury are vastly different in different industries. Someone who works as a commercial driver has to worry about repetitive strain, motor vehicle collisions and over-exertion while loading or unloading. A worker at a fast food restaurant needs to worry about exposure to dangerous kitchen implements, while factory workers have to worry about machine presses and vehicles moving across the factory floor.
One of the increasingly serious concerns for the safety of modern workers is the threat of violence on the job. Workplace violence could involve someone coming to work and attacking a co-worker they previously had a dispute with or a criminal act by a patron. How many workers feel the impact of violence on the job?
Unfortunately, workplace violence has been on the rise in recent years
Experts believe that many incidents go unreported, especially when the confrontation involves two or more employees and not a visitor to the business. There are roughly two million acts of workplace violence reported each year, and almost 10% of workplace fatalities are the result of violent acts, like armed robberies.
Those in customer-facing positions and those who work at hospitals are among the workers most at risk of experiencing violence on the job. Certain industries, like the retail sector, have reported increasing levels of customer violence toward staff members, and altercations between employees can happen in any field.
Interpersonal violence can lead to workers’ compensation benefits
Your right to workers’ compensation insurance coverage is not dependent on getting hurt in a particular kind of incident. Interpersonal violence can qualify you for benefits as easily as a machinery malfunction could.
You can potentially count on workers’ compensation to cover your medical care expenses and also to cover some of your lost wages. If the injuries you suffer leave you with permanent symptoms, you may even qualify for permanent disability benefits either because you can no longer work or because you must change your profession and accept a drop in income.
Identifying and avoiding your biggest risks on the job will minimize the possibility that you will eventually require workers’ compensation insurance and that you understand your right to coverage if you need it.