Injury While Lifting a Heavy Package on the Job – $104,000 Settlement
While lifting a heavy package during the course of employment, this man injured both his shoulder and ACL. Our lawyer filed a claim with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and after lengthy negotiations with the insurer for the employer was able to come to an agreement for $104,000 in Workers’ Comp benefits for our injured client.
Jobs at Risk for Lifting Injuries
According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), lifting heavy objects is one the greatest sources of injury on the job. In everyday life, people lift objects both in the home and in the workplace all the time. Yet lifting injuries can occur for a variety of reasons including lifting from an improper angle, failure to lift with the knees, overexertion, repeated lifting, a lack of training in proper techniques or a lack of proper equipment. In the workplace, some jobs are more likely than others to experience lifting injuries such as:
- Custodians, janitors and maintenance workers
- Hospital staff
- Warehouse personnel
- Nursing home employees
- Factory workers
- UPS, FedEx and Post Office Warehouse/Delivery
- Construction workers
- Furniture movers
- Restaurant servers, waiters, waitresses and kitchen staff
- Retail workers
In other types of jobs, such as office personnel, suffering a lifting injury is less likely as the employment description does not typically involve lifting heavy objects. When an injury does occur, it is like to involve one of the following:
- Muscle: The lower back is where most of the stress is focused when lifting. Small tears or twists may occur to the muscles which make them less effective and require some time to repair, or in other more severe cases, a muscle tendon may tear away or rip entirely away from the bone, requiring surgical repair.
- Spine: During lifting, a disc in the spinal column may become herniated, ruptured or bulge, resulting in pressure against a nerve and radiating pain across the lower body and legs.
- Joint: Elbow joints, knee joints or shoulder joints may become irritated, strained or damaged.
Avoiding a Lifting Injury
The potential for such an injury still exists and such lifting injuries can and do happen almost anywhere. It is not even necessary that the object be heavy and it may be just a file box or even some copy paper. Some widely recommended techniques to avoid trauma include:
- Keep the object as close to your body as possible and level with your lower stomach
- Keep your feet the width of your shoulder apart and keep one foot ahead of the other foot
- To change direct, take small steps with your feet, rather than turning your body
- As you change direction, lead with hips
- Keep your shoulders lined up with hips
- When lifting, squat down and bend at the knees and hips only
- Keep good posture with back straight, shoulders square, chest out, and look straight in front
- When lifting, keep back straight and do not twist your body
- When putting the object down, use only hips and knees to squat
If you were injured while on the job and would like help to determine whether you have a workers’ compensation case, call Mitchell S. Sexner & Associates LLC at 800-996-4824. No fees are ever charged unless successful.