Forklifts are specialized pieces of equipment that require special training in order to operate and command respect from their drivers and those working nearby. With roughly 20,000 serious injuries and 100 deaths resulting from forklift accidents every year, forklifts are easily among the most dangerous classes of heavy machinery in warehouses and on construction sites. If you live or work in Pennsylvania and have been injured on the job in a forklift accident, our attorneys can help you file for workers’ compensation.
Forklift Injury Trends
Common Causes of Forklift Injuries
When you are injured on the job, with very few exceptions, you are entitled to benefits through Pennsylvania’s workers’ compensation system. Workers’ compensation covers forklift accidents, including those resulting from:
- Being struck or run over by a forklift
- Being struck by falling debris while operating a forklift
- Falling from a forklift
- Hitting walls or objects while operating a forklift
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), overturns and accidents involving non-drivers are the most common forms of forklift accidents – accounting for roughly two-thirds of all injuries and fatalities.
Pennsylvania Man Dies in Forklift Accident
On August 30, 2015, a Pennsylvania man working in Harrisburg – about two hours west of Jenkintown – was killed in a late-night forklift accident. The man, a 40-year-old warehouse worker, was using the forklift to move bundles of steel in a narrow aisle at around 11:00pm. As he was moving one bundle, it appears that he dislodged another without noticing. While making a turn, he was impaled by the dislodged bundle. The accident is under investigation by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
OSHA Reports on Causes of 2015 Forklift Fatalities
OSHA maintains an updated online list of work-related deaths. Some of the other forklift-related deaths occurring in 2015 throughout the country have resulted from:
- Being crushed by an elevated load falling from a forklift
- Being fatally crushed by a forklift
- Being killed in forklift overturning accidents
- Electrocution when a forklift came into contact with power lines
- Falling or being ejected from a forklift
- Forklift collisions
Of course, not all forklift accidents are fatal. Accidents leave thousands of men and women injured and unable to work each year.
What to Do if You Have been Injured in a Forklift Accident
If you have been injured in a forklift accident, you need to report the accident to your employer. Your employer has the right to choose the physicians who treat their employees’ work-related injuries, and if you see your own doctor you may compromise your workers’ compensation benefits. For more information, you can contact one of our attorneys.
You can also read more in our Workers’ Compensation FAQs.
Contact Solnick & Associates LLC | Jenkintown, PA Workers Compensation Lawyers
At Solnick & Associates LLC, we are passionate about helping injured workers obtain maximum compensation for their work-related injuries. If you have been injured in a forklift accident – or if you have lost a loved one in a forklift accident – we encourage you to contact us for a free consultation. With offices in Jenkintown, we serve clients throughout the greater Philadelphia area.