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The Most Common Work Injury Is More Ordinary Than You Think

What do you think is the most common type of work injury is in the U.S.? Is it slips and falls, overexertion and bodily injury, or contact with an object? Although these categories are three of the leading causes, the National Safety Council recently reported that “exposure to harmful substances or environments” was the main leading cause of work-related injuries.

The caveat, however, is that the data are skewed a bit by the 2020 pandemic. Whereas “exposure to harmful substances and environments” was the sixth leading cause of work injuries in 2019 at just under 37,000 incidents, more than 424,000 were reported during 2020. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, this now-leading cause of work injuries was relatively stable going back to 2016.

When considering this anomaly in the data, it’s pretty reasonable to assume that the COVID-19 virus is to blame. More than one million Americans have died from the disease and more than 97.3 million cases have been documented to date. Other factors that constitute “exposure to harmful substances and environments” include electrical shock, radiation, air and water pressure, and experiencing a traumatic event – but it took a worldwide pandemic to pump the numbers up by more than 1,000%.

Workers’ Comp in a ‘Post-COVID’ California

By now, two-and-some-change years later, living and working with COVID-19 around might feel ordinary. It’s an ironic twist of fate for something once deemed “the novel coronavirus.” And it hasn’t gone anywhere, either. Variants of the virus are constantly mutating and a swarm of them have scientists and medical professionals on their toes as we head into the winter months – historically the most serious for any respiratory disease.

California still offers workers’ comp coverage for COVID-19 in certain cases. If you believe you contracted this disease from a customer, coworker, or someone else at work, you may be eligible for benefits to afford your injury-related medical care. You can also seek benefits that cover a portion of your lost wages while out on recovery.

We Can Help with Your Workers’ Compensation Claim

Smolich & Smolich can help you seek the benefits you need from workers’ comp. If we believe we can help you get the compensation you need to move forward with your life, we’ll explain your options and how you can take the next step.

For more information or to request a free consultation, contact us online.