Understand Your Risk & Know Your Workers’ Compensation Rights
Another Florida summer is almost here, which means hot sun, humidity, and a higher chance of hurricanes. For many, it also means snagging seasonal work and gig jobs for extra cash.
Lifeguard, summer camp counselor, construction worker, landscaper, package courier, special events seasonal assistant, recreation attendant… There’s no shortage of summer employment opportunities throughout Florida, whether you’re looking near Jacksonville, Tampa, or the tourist hotspots of South Florida, like Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, and West Palm Beach.
Unfortunately, summer is also known for more workplace injuries than any other season. What is it about summer that makes this true?
3 Reasons For The Summer Spike In Workplace Injuries
- Greater consumer demand for products/services. Greater demand for goods and services during the summer means greater demand for workers – those who can deliver on the company promises! Often, this translates to company owners and project managers placing higher-than-normal expectations on summer employees and offering incentives to work long hours when necessary. This can lead to fatigue, impaired concentration, sleepiness, and other conditions, significantly increasing injury chances.
- Inadequate training for seasonal workers. To make matters worse, many seasonal employees don’t receive proper training. Knowing that these workers will only be around for a few months, most employers hesitate to invest too many training hours or resources. However, this attempt at saving money can come at a hefty cost: seriously injured job site workers and workers’ compensation claims.
- Weather conditions. High temperatures can occur nationwide, but South Florida, in particular, is known for its sweltering summer heat. The added challenge is frequent rain and thunderstorms and greater chances of flash floods and hurricanes. Sudden changes in weather conditions put outdoor workers at greater risk of injury.
Common Florida Summer Job Injuries
- Heat-related illnesses range from skin rashes and heat cramps to heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Heat stroke can be fatal, and depending on the environmental conditions and individual, it can develop extremely quickly (within 15 minutes) or slowly and subtly over many hours or days. The most vulnerable workers include:
- Those working outside in the agriculture, construction, landscaping, mail delivery, or oil and gas industry.
- Anyone whose body has not been acclimated to the heat.
- People who are already dehydrated or do not take sufficient water breaks.
- Those with certain medical conditions or who take certain prescription medications.
- Individuals who are overweight or not accustomed to regular physical activity.
- Workers who are required to wear dark clothing or personal protective equipment (e.g., helmets, gloves, goggles, police/fire uniforms, extra padding, etc.).
- Slip-and-falls. Sudden summer storms can cause slippery surfaces for outdoor workers, putting them at risk of falling (especially if they are not dressed for wet weather). Due to the high heat, some workers, like lifeguards, use footwear that lacks support and durability (e.g., flip-flop sandals), making a slip-and-fall incident more likely. In general, anyone working outdoors is surrounded by greater environmental unpredictability, including unsafe conditions that can result in injury.
- Motor vehicle accidents. Since road maintenance and roadside construction tend to happen during the summer, injury risks associated with these activities also increase during the summer – one of the foremost being vehicle accidents. All it takes is one distracted driver to overlook a warning sign, and there could be multiple seriously injured job site workers.
Fenstersheib Law Group, P.A.: Fighting For Workers’ Rights
If you’ve been injured on the job, you’re likely eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim. This means the medical costs associated with your injury will be covered, and you’ll receive a percentage of your regular pay while you rest, recover, and regain your strength.
At Fenstersheib Law Group, P.A., we know the last thing you want to deal with is a claim or legal procedure after an injury. Our team of experienced workers’ compensation attorneys is eager to help get you the financial support you need during this time.
One of the biggest workers’ compensation claims mistakes is waiting to report and file the claim.
Don’t Wait. Let us help.
Our main office is in Hallandale Beach, Florida, and we have secondary Florida offices in Hollywood, Miramar, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Orlando, Sarasota, Tampa, & Jacksonville.
Call us today: 800-TellRobert