There are a lot of dangerous jobs out there. But truth be told, some of the most dangerous are those that you would think are the safest. For example, just a few years ago, statistics showed that retail work was riskier than factory work, with 3.5 out of every 100 of those workers suffering from a workplace injury or illness. That compared with 3.4 injuries or illnesses out of every 100 manufacturing workers.
What causes injuries in the retail sector?
There are many ways that workers in the retail sector can be injured. The most common injuries are those involving sprains and strains, but fractures, lacerations and generalized pain are common, too.
Therefore, those who work in furniture stores and other retail settings where heavy lifting is often required are likely at a higher risk of being injured on the job. So, too, are those who work in automotive sectors, such as tire selling, and those who work in hardware stores that sell building materials. Even those who work at pet stores see an increased rate of injury or illness. During this time of year, delivery drivers who have to deliver an extraordinary number of packages each day are also at an increased risk of being harmed at work.
How can you stay safe at your retail job?
Although you can’t fully eliminate the risk of being injured at work, there are some steps that you can take to try to reduce the risk. This includes:
- Using proper lifting techniques
- Avoiding lifting heavy objects without assistance
- Taking breaks when you need to
- Using safety equipment provided to you by your employer
- Following safety protocols implemented by your employer
We know that following some of these guidelines can be difficult, especially during the holiday season when you may be required to put yourself in more positions that could lead to an injury, but if you can work to follow them, you might be able to keep yourself safer at work.
What should you do if you’re injured at your retail job?
If you suffer a workplace injury or illness, you might struggle to make ends meet when your wages are stopped and your medical expenses increase. This can certainly be a difficult time to navigate, but you might also be able to obtain financial relief through the workers’ compensation program. In order to succeed here, though, you’ll need to be able to demonstrate that you suffered injuries that were exacerbated at work while you were performing your work duties.
That might not sound difficult to do, but insurance companies are notorious for challenging these claims. They may argue that you were engaging in horseplay at the time that you were injured or that your injuries pre-existed your workplace accident. Either way, you need to be able to anticipate their arguments and aggressively counter them as needed.
Fight for the support that you need after being injured at work
There’s a lot at stake when you pursue a workers’ compensation claim. Without those benefits, you might be facing the very real possibility of eviction or foreclosure, vehicle repossession, and a struggle to pay for your everyday needs. Alternatively, without these benefits, you might be forced back to work despite still coping with a serious injury.
Don’t let that happen to you. You need time and financial stability to recover from your injuries. Therefore, if you’ve been hurt at work, you need to aggressively pursue the benefits that you need and deserve. If you think that you could use some help in that regard, you may want to discuss your circumstances with an attorney who is well-suited to advocate on your behalf.