Loading Dock Accidents Can Result in Serious Injuries
The workday might have started just like any other one. As the warehouse manager, you pop out to the loading dock all the time. You enjoy chatting with the truckers as they drop off materials. However, today was quite different. As you watched in horror, one of your employees slipped off the loading dock. Down below, his leg was twisted, and he was writhing in pain. You’ve always known it. Loading dock accidents can result in serious injuries.
If you can relate to some version of this story, it’s not surprising. Unfortunately, loading dock accidents occur on a regular basis. Meanwhile, it’s not just workers slipping and falling. OSHA records provide some insight into other types of incidents involving loading docks:
- The employee was chatting with other workers when a truck pulled back into the dock. The worker became pinned between the loading dock and the truck and suffered internal injuries.
- A forklift operator died when the left front wheel of the forklift got stuck on the edge of the dock. Employee jumped out of the operator seat and forklift fell on top of him.
- Warehouse dock worker was using an industrial truck to load a semi. Meanwhile, he failed to engage the vehicle restraint system. The tractor-trailer driver thought the load was done and started to pull away from the dock. The dock worker fell backward from the back of the truck and seriously injured both knees.
All of these incidents were serious enough to warrant OSHA reports. In some cases, the employers were actually cited for failing to keep the loading docks safe.
Compensation for Loading Dock Accidents
If you are injured on a loading dock accident, you are most likely entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. All things considered, this is true even if the accident happened just because you weren’t paying attention.
Workers’ compensation benefits in New Jersey are comprised of payment for medical treatment, temporary disability benefits, and may also include disbursements allotted for permanent disability. (You do not have to be totally disabled to receive a permanent disability award.)
Some employees injured in loading dock accident may not qualify for New Jersey Workers’ Compensation benefits. For example, workers who load and unload ships at Port Newark or Port Elizabeth may receive financial compensation as mandated by the federal Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act.
What if you were injured because of another party’s negligence? A lawyer with experience in both workers’ compensation and personal laws should investigate the circumstances of your accident. In some cases, you may be able to make a third party claim. Although there are exceptions, the general rule is that the third party may not be a co-worker.
At the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone, we have decades of experience handling both workers’ compensation and personal injury claims. If you were hurt either at work or due to someone else’s negligence, we want to help you. Contact us to set up a complimentary appointment.