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February 2016 Archives

How to file a claim for the EEOIC

The Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation is a federal program to compensate energy workers and their families for injuries suffered while working on qualified contracts for the Department of Energy. Energy workers are at risk of being exposed to dangerously high levels of radiation and chemicals that can affect their ability to work. In response to these health risks, Congress created the EEOIC. It does not protect every worker ? it only protects workers that perform work on behalf of the Department of Energy. Typically this will include nuclear power plant workers and other similar fields. You may contact your employer to determine if this program covers you.

Cellphone tower workers have a dangerous job

The unsung heroes of the telecommunications revolution are the cellular tower workers who set up and scale these towers every day. Cell towers are designed to be sturdy and weather the elements but eventually everything breaks. When these towers break 10,000 to 20,000 workers go out and repair or replace the components. Despite this industry being relatively small, compared to construction or coal workers, an unusually high percentage of them suffer injuries and fatalities. In 2014, 12 tower workers fell to their deaths, and dozens more were significantly injured.

Best Lawyer. Superlawyer. Mitch Dugan: Pittsburgh Personal Injury Attorney

Best Lawyer, Superlawyer, Personal Injury attorney--what do these terms mean in Pennsylvania? If you sustained an injury and you are looking for an attorney you immediately realize that there are a lot of injury lawyers advertising and how can you tell them apart? You want to hire a lawyer that is a good fit for you. Someone who is experienced. An attorney who can settle your case and get you as much as they can as fast as they can. One who listen to you and cares about you. And if they aren't able to settle your personal injury case you want a lawyer who knows the law, the system, are experienced and will fight for you to bring your case to a successful conclusion. You want an injury lawyer who can get results.

New study shows farm workers at an increased risk for carpal tunnel syndrome

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recently completed a study of processing plant workers in South Carolina and determined that 40% of the workers show signs that they either have or will develop carpal tunnel syndrome as a result of performing the same repetitive motions over and over again. There is currently discussion going on in Washington, D.C. among legislators about increasing the speed of the slaughter lines, but the study shows clear evidence that doing that would increase the risk of injury to plant workers.

Some safety tips for working outside this winter pt. 1

Thanks to the El Nino effect, this winter is supposed to be interestingly unusual, as the record blizzard and snowfall can attest. Working outside in the winter always comes with its additional dangers, not to mention the unpredictable weather that may result this year. There is always a lot of risk of injury and illness for workers who are constantly outside, like construction. You are more exposed to the environment, so you are more vulnerable.

There is a specialized compensation system for energy workers

To continue theme of specialized workers' compensation systems for specific industries, this article will discuss the Energy Employee Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act. Working in the energy sector is dangerous. You are often exposed to dangerous chemicals, hazards and dangerous conditions. Working in such an environment could make you vulnerable to illnesses or injuries, which could cause you to leave the workforce early. This article will explore this alternative compensation system for energy workers.

How to file a workers' compensation claim for black lung

Black lung is a disease that instantly invokes images of coal working, black dust and hard work. Unfortunately, the reason that black lung evokes such powerful imagery is because it is a serious respiratory disease that has plagued the mining industry since the first shaft was dug. Black lung is a respiratory illness that impairs the ability to breathe; it can become so serious that coal workers are unable to continue working.

So, how much money can you expect from workers' comp?

After a work-related injury or illness, you likely have countless questions and concerns. What kind of medical treatment will you need? Will you be able to return to work eventually? What kind of hoops do you need to jump through to get workers' compensation benefits?

Workers injured on the job by sprawling fire

Over 150 firefighters responded to a chemical fire that occurred at a plant in Blake Township, Washington County, PA last week. The fire finally went out after nearly a day. Only one individual, a worker at the train transfer station who has not yet been identified, was reported as being injured in the incident. The worker was reportedly taken to a burn treatment center with severe burns.

Disability benefits versus workers' compensation

It is easy to conflate disability with workers' compensation. Both are designed to provide benefits in the event of an injury. Both are trying to protect workers and their families from the devastating change that losing a primary income can bring. However, there are key differences between the two systems that prevent them from providing overlapping benefits. This article will explore the differences between the two systems so that you don't waste valuable time and effort applying for the wrong benefits.

Man seriously injured will have trial in PA

A case involving a Pennsylvania man who suffered serious injuries will be heard in state court after a ruling by a federal judge on 15 March. The court documents indicate that U-Haul International Inc. and three other companies were negligent when the man was hurt on the job at a work site in Dauphin County.

Pennsylvania company fined for violating OSHA rules

An Indiana, Pennsylvania company has been cited and fined for four repeat and nineteen serious safety violations. The company was reportedly warned but failed to correct violations relating to its failure to guard live electrical parts, chains, sprockets, pulleys and belts. The company is also said to have failed to install a standard railing on one of its platforms. These violations were first cited in 2013 amid concerns regarding the potential for workplace accidents. The fines relating to these violations amount to more than $26,000.

Your employer can require you to see one of their doctors

Workers' compensation laws are governed by two systems: federal and state. For Pennsylvania, the Department of Labor and Industry administers the PA Workers' Compensation Act (hereinafter the "Act") which enshrines your rights under the system. The idea of workers' compensation is to balance yours' and your boss' interests. One of those balances is that your employer can require you use one of their doctors. This article will discuss that requirement and how it could impact your case.

New rules to protect coal miners

Coal mining is notoriously dangerous. The ever-present dangers of mine collapse, gas leaks and explosions are pervasive throughout the industry. This danger persists despite improvements in safety and technology. These events, while shocking and tragic, do not capture the true risk of coal mining, which includes diseases like the black lung. Safety and technology took a big step forward this year as the Mine Safety and Health Administration began implementing new rules to combat this disease.

OSHA investigates worker's death

A Pennsylvania man's death is being investigated by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The fatal accident took place in Lancaster on 27 November 2015, and the victim was a 42-year-old tree trimmer from Feasterville who was hired to clear branches from power lines for an apple-picking festival.

Hiring a Workers' Compensation Lawyer

Getting Workers' Compensation payments for an injured worker is supposed to be easy. In theory you can apply without a lawyer (*lawyer and attorney are the same term for someone who has gone to law school, passed the bar exam and is practicing law) and succeed in your claim. But in reality workers' compensation is like any government program, complicated, red tape, rules, multiple forms, and not very clear.

Pittsburgh sees decrease in number of workplace fatalities

According to a report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, workplace fatalities in the Pittsburgh area dropped from 29 in 2013 to 18 in 2014. This is the lowest number since 2003, the year that the Bureau of Labor began collecting data for the area. This report represents a significant improvement in Pittsburgh workplace safety. The numbers are also in contrast to a nationwide two-percent increase in workplace deaths from 4,585 in 2013 to 4,679 in 2014.

Disease and injuries often spike during and after storms

Natural disasters occur throughout the country, including Pennsylvania. Storms that have recently hit the east coast are an example of catastrophes caused by nature. The storm killed people, and the disaster may cause additional harm to area residents. Workers who provided help in the aftermath of the tornado may face occupational diseases and injuries caused by the cold or toxins released by the storms.

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February 2016 Archives | Pittsburgh Workers' Compensation Law Blog a