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Lower Back Injuries in the Workplace

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According to a recent study, Americans worked more hours and received less vacation time than their international counterparts.

Full-time employed adults reported working an average of 47 hours per week. That’s a lot of time on the job and a lot of exposure to the possibility of being hurt at work. Among the most prevalent workplace injuries are those to the back, with as many as one million employees suffering back injuries every year. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that back injuries account for one of every five workplace injuries or illnesses and that four out of five of these injuries were to the nerves, muscles, and bones of the lower back. Back injuries can be extremely painful, and their full severity may not be obvious right away. If you or someone you love received a debilitating back injury at work, it is important to contact a GA jobsite back injury lawyer. The worker injury attorneys at the Mann Law Firm can help by reviewing the circumstances, outlining all available options, and guiding you through the legal system. Call us at 478-742-3381 or fill out our online form. In addition to cases handled in Macon, we are prepared to handle claims on behalf of clients in Dublin, Warner Robins, Milledgeville and other Georgia communities. We would like to meet with you to discuss your case, and we are proud to offer free initial consultations.

Low back pain can be classified as acute (pain lasting less than 6 weeks), sub-chronic (6 to 12 weeks), or chronic (more than 12 weeks). The most frequent area of pain involves the five vertebrae in the lumbar region that supports much of the weight of the upper body.

Common job-related low back injuries include:

  • Bulging, herniated, or slipped discs
  • Fractured vertebrae
  • Pinched nerves
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Sprains — torn or overstretched ligaments
  • Strains — tears in tendons or muscles.

While many workplace back injuries are due to overextension from heavy lifting, pulling, or pushing, many others develop over time. Repetitive motions, such as lifting, twisting, pulling, pushing or even sitting in an improperly positioned chair for prolonged periods, may lead to a chronic back injury. A 2014 global study determined that worldwide, low back pain was the leading cause of ergonomics-related worker disability, responsible for 21.7 million disability-adjusted life years – years of healthy life lost – and affecting approximately 26 percent of the population. Individuals who sustain a lower back injury in a work-related incident may be entitled to collect financial damages. The Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act provides benefits to employees injured in the course and scope of their employment. However, if an employee is hurt as a result of another party’s negligence or misconduct, he or she may be able to bring a successful personal injury lawsuit. Employers are obligated to provide a safe workplace, and they can be held liable for failing to do so. The major areas of employer negligence tend to revolve around hiring practices, retention policies, supervision, and training. For example, an employer that fails to properly screen new employees or to properly maintain safety equipment may be responsible for an injury that was a direct result of that negligence and that could have been avoided. While preventing low back injuries may be a challenge, careless companies must be held responsible for dangerous workplace conditions and unsafe job sites.

Far too many injuries are caused by the failure of an employer to implement and maintain basic safety measures.

Depending on the circumstances of your back injury, you may have a legal cause of action against multiple parties. For example, an employee who is hurt because a safety guard was improperly removed from a machine or because a tripping hazard was left by a subcontractor should not be limited by workers’ compensation benefits. Identifying all responsible parties is one of the many reasons why anyone seriously injured at work should consult with an attorney. Proving a workplace accident case can be very difficult, but the Macon attorneys of the Mann Law Firm can help people who were hurt at work. We aggressively seek full and fair compensation for our clients, and are always willing to take a case to trial if necessary. The damages available in a worker’s back injury claim may include compensation for lost wages, reimbursement for medical treatment, and compensation for any permanent impairment, pain and suffering. We have been successfully litigating personal injury cases across Georgia for over 50 years. Our job is to examine the circumstances of what caused the injury while focusing on our client’s future. With our experience, we know how to seek compensation from all possible sources, and we will carefully calculate your past, current and future losses to get you the best possible recovery. While we cannot guarantee the outcome of any case, we can promise to listen, to advise, and to deliver unwavering legal advocacy on your behalf. Contact us at (478) 742-3381 or use this convenient online contact form. Let us help you.