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Overexertion a leading cause of workplace injuries

Workplace injury data show that workers in New Jersey and across the country sometimes push themselves too far. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, musculoskeletal disorders caused by overexertion represented 32 percent of all reported injuries and illnesses in 2014 among employees nationwide.

An analysis of workplace safety by Liberty Mutual found that worker disabilities resulted most often from these overexertion injuries. Direct costs borne by employers providing benefits for these injured workers totaled $15.08 billion in 2013. This injury category produced almost 25 percent of workplace injury costs. Same-level falls accounted for the second costliest injury category, adding $10.17 billion to employer monetary obligations or 16.4 percent of the annual cost burden.

Falls to a lower level cost employers $5.4 billion and came in third among costly workplace injury categories. In addition to the top three categories, significant costs arose from other accidents like motor vehicle accidents, equipment catching or striking a worker or repetitive motions necessary to perform micro-tasks. The BLS determined that the occupations most prone to these injuries include laborers, workers who move freight, stock and other materials and nursing assistants.

A person who experiences a work-related injury has the right to collect benefits from the employer's workers' compensation insurance. These benefits could include payment of medical bills, physical therapy and lost income under certain circumstances. A disabled worker might even be able to claim a disability benefit. Completing paperwork for the workplace accident and the injury is essential for gaining a settlement. When a person has difficulty getting answers about benefits, an attorney might supply support. An attorney could possibly examine the insurance policy and explain what benefits might be available.

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