Under the workers’ compensation law in Pennsylvania, an employee who is injured on the job is guaranteed to receive coverage for his medical bills and even the majority of his wages, if he cannot work for an extended period of time. He automatically qualifies for these benefits without filing a lawsuit and without determining who may be at fault for the injuries he suffers.
That doesn’t mean you should be careless on the job, though. Based on our long experience as Harrisburg workers’ compensation lawyers, we can promise you that it’s far better not to get hurt at work than to have your medical bills paid after your injury.
The trouble is that too many workers and their employers don’t give workplace safety in Pennsylvania the attention it deserves. As a result, accidents occur that could have been avoided. In order to do this, though, both workers and management need to be aware of the typical hazards for the industry and of the appropriate safety gear to mitigate those hazards.
Pennsylvania work-related burn injuries: How great are the risks?
Burn injuries make a good example. Roughly one in every seven adult burn injures is job-related. While every workplace has some risk of structural fire or other catastrophe, the risks from burns are greater in some occupations than others. Studies have identified these jobs as the most often at risk for burns:
- Food service – Cooks, chefs, servers, restaurant maintenance workers, caterers, and people in related jobs work around open flames, hot stoves and ovens, boiling liquids, and hot fat all the time. The majority of all workplace illness and injury incidents for the food service industry involve burns.
- Vehicle and equipment cleaners and repair – This category isn’t limited to car wash attendants, but also automotive and charter bus repair and maintenance. These jobs can involve steam or hot water under high pressure, caustic cleaning agents, electricity, and even welding operations.
- Industrial manufacturing and assembly – Mix heavy machinery, industrial steam lines, high voltage electrical power, heat-treatment stations for metal parts, and assembly line workers, and you have the recipe for serious burn accidents. Millwrights—specialists in setting up and removing machinery—are particularly vulnerable to workplace burns in steel mills, power stations, refineries, and other large-scale industrial sites.
- Electricians and cable installers – Working with electrical power naturally exposes people in these occupations to electrical burn risks. Because current causes electrical lines to heat up, installers and electrical workers also face elevated risks of thermal burns.
- Construction workers – The construction trades expose workers to gas lines, steam lines, and electrical cables. Roofers typically use hot tar, while parking lot and driveway construction workers may use hot asphalt.
Getting a fair recovery for your job-related burn injury
Employees who suffer a burn injury in the course of their jobs can file a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation claim to recoup the costs of medical expenses and lost wages. If a third party is responsible for the injury, other areas of compensation may be available.
Contact the Harrisburg injury lawyers at Schmidt Kramer at (717) 888-8888 to get answers to your questions or to set up a FREE, confidential meeting to discuss your case. At the same time, you can request our free guide, Who Pays The Bills When You Are Injured At Work?, which explains the Pennsylvania workers’ compensation system. Call us early, before you have to deal with a denial of your workers’ compensation claim.