Charlotte Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Helping Injured Manufacturing Employees
Protecting injured manufacturing workers throughout North Carolina
When an industrial or manufacturing worker suffers an on the job injury by accident, often they are unable to perform their work duties for a specified period of time. In these situations, hurt employees can receive workers’ compensation benefits, including disability payments.
When you are injured in a manufacturing workplace accident, regardless of whether or not the cause was negligence, you may have the right to secure financial compensation for your injury. This may be done through your company’s workers’ compensation insurance or, if necessary, legal action. If you are the victim of a manufacturing job accident, contact the Charlotte manufacturing accident attorneys at Warren & Kallianos, PLLC for the legal representation need.
North Carolina as a Hub of Manufacturing Activity
With more than 460,000 in the industry, the state of North Carolina possesses the largest complement of manufacturing workers in the southeastern United States, as well as the 10th largest center for manufacturing in the U.S. These workers are often exposed to dangerous and hazardous conditions as well as heavy equipment that continually poses a threat for injury. When you combine the physically strenuous activity of manufacturing along with the risky situations faced by industry employees, accidents are prone to happen.
As a central hub of NASCAR and the actual birthplace of stock-car racing, North Carolina is home to nearly 300 automotive manufacturing facilities with a workforce that exceeds 26,000. Over a period of five years, the manufacturing industry in the state has grown by an astonishing 25 percent.
There are some 3,000 furniture industry establishments in North Carolina that are served by over 35,000 employees throughout the state. The concentration of furniture manufacturing activity in the state exceeds the national average by a factor of three.
Accident Risks Faced by Manufacturing Employees
In 2016, there were 13,300 recorded cases of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses in North Carolina’s private industry manufacturing sector. This number represents a significant majority of all such injuries and illnesses in the private industry, goods-producing sector.
In North Carolina, the factory assembly line poses many dangers to workers. Although employees face different risks in different manufacturing environments, some of the risks are quite similar throughout the broad manufacturing sector. Some of the most frequently occurring injuries among factory workers in manufacturing settings include:
- Overexertion accidents. Serious and debilitating injuries can result from accidents resulting from various types of physical activity, including lifting, pulling, throwing, pushing, turning, crawling, bending, catching, climbing, reaching, and other motions exhibited by workers on the factory floor.
- Equipment accidents. When specialized manufacturing equipment malfunctions, the results can be dangerous for workers. Severe cases can involve the body parts of workers, such as hands, fingers, legs, or arms being cut or pulled into motorized equipment. These tragic accidents are more likely to occur when workers have not been properly trained to safely operate machinery or when safety guards are not in place.
- Transportation accidents. These types of accidents can involve crashes between rail vehicles and other vehicles, impacts between vehicles and pedestrians, falls from vehicles, overturned equipment, roadway collisions, truck rollovers or jackknifing accidents, and other dangerous occurrences. In certain cases, an accident of this nature may lead to a separate third-party claim against the manufacturer of equipment or other at-fault party other than the worker’s employer.
- Exposure to harmful substances or environments. These accidents can involve exposure to radiation, electrocution, exposure to water and air pressure changes, exposure to high decibel noise, exposure to paints, gases, solvents, and other toxic chemicals.
- Contact with objects and equipment. Employees in manufacturing settings can suffer injuries when impacted by various types of equipment and objects, such as falling objects, rolling equipment or objects, non-transport vehicles, discharged or flying objects, or equipment or handheld objects that malfunction or break.
- Fires and explosions. Chemical, gas, and electrical explosions, vehicle fires, structure fires, machinery fires, and dust explosions are all accidents in manufacturing environments that can lead to serious injuries.
- Falls, slips and trips. Many accidents in manufacturing workplace settings occur when a worker accidentally slips on a wet or oily surface. Other slip and fall accidents can occur because walking surfaces are uneven or workers trip on stairs or over objects on walkways. In more extreme cases, a worker may fall from an unsafe work platform, such as scaffolding, a collapsing piece of equipment or structure as a result of uneven flooring or inadequate lighting.
Many injuries cause severe pain and force workers to miss a certain amount of work time. In some cases, the gravity of the injuries results in highly debilitating consequences for the employee. Some of the worst injuries sustained in manufacturing environments include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Wrongful Death
- Spinal cord injuries
- Burns from fires, chemical or steam exposure, and plant explosions
- Vision or hearing loss
It is important to discuss the circumstances and facts surrounding your manufacturing accident with a seasoned workers compensation attorney to determine your options for recovering damages for your injuries and losses.
Compensation Available to Injured NC Manufacturing Workers
The agency responsible for regulating workers’ compensation claims in North Carolina is the N.C. Industrial Commission.
Workers’ comp benefits available to North Carolina manufacturing employees include:
- Medical recovery expenses
- Permanent disability
- Lost income for missed work time as a result of your accident
You may have access to additional benefits depending on the specific facts of your manufacturing accident. Each case is different.
Options for Filing a Third-Party Lawsuit
Workers’ compensation is designed to provide injured workers on the job the benefits they need in a timely manner without the need to sue the employer. In fact, if you are injured in the workplace, you are generally limited to workers’ compensation benefits and prohibited from suing your employer for an on-the-job injury.
However, if your injury was caused by the negligence of a party outside of your employment, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. This is referred to as a third-party claim.
For example, you may have a third-party claim against the manufacturer, designer, or distributor of a defective tool, equipment, or another item you used on the job if that use resulted in your injury.
As a manufacturing employee, you have the right to operate in a safe workplace environment. State and federal law mandates employers maintain a safe environment for their employees – one that will not pose an unreasonable health or physical risk of danger to their well-being.
Representing Injured Manufacturing Employees throughout North Carolina
At Warren & Kallianos, we are dedicated to helping the victims of manufacturing accidents and their families secure all the compensation they deserve for their pain, suffering and other losses. Our Charlotte manufacturing accident attorneys are here to help you as well. We can fight for the resources you need to pay your medical bills, recover lost wages, and obtain justice for your pain and suffering. To get started with a free, confidential consultation, call our law office today at 704-275-5593 or complete our contact form.