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Hackensack Workers' Compensation Law Blog

New Jersey construction worker dies after wall collapse

A death at an industrial building located in the northern part of New Jersey remains under investigation today after a cinder block wall fell on a construction worker who was working at the job site. According to the Ramsey Police Department, the 56-year-old man from Riverdale was working around the outside area of a building located in the community of Bergen County around 11:30 a.m. when a 9 by 12 foot portion of the wall gave away and fell on top of him.

Police state that the man and other construction workers were in the process of removing the wall to prepare the site for a new garage door that would provide access into the building when the wall fell. No other workers were reported to be injured.

What you need to know when you're injured on the job

Accidents happen and sometimes, they happen on the job. Unfortunately, some people who are hurt while they are at work choose not to report that they have been injured. They try to continue doing their job, but then the pain becomes intolerable and they can no longer perform their duties. Although they can report it at a later date, this can often cause delays in getting benefits started.

If you are injured at work, there are certain things you should know. First, it is important to report your injury to your supervisor immediately. Since you have a right to receive medical treatment, ask to see a doctor and request a workers' compensation form. You will not be able to receive benefits until you return the claim form to your employer, so fill it out as soon as you can.

Elevator company receives $28,000 fine in fatal accident

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued a $28,000 fine against United States Elevator Inc. for a fatal accident that occurred around 10 a.m., on Aug. 15, 2014. A 25-year-old maintenance worker who was working on an elevator in an apartment building was killed during the accident.

According to OSHA's report, the Fairfield elevator company allegedly failed to properly evaluate the workplace and did not have proper procedure guidelines in place at the time of the accident. The man was reportedly crushed to death by the counterweights of the elevator after the doors shut and the elevator began descending while he was performing some maintenance work on the elevator at the New York Avenue Apartments. The 15-story building hosts 150 apartments that are rented by individuals that are disabled or elderly.

Symptoms and causes of carpal tunnel syndrome

Many Bergen County residents spend the largest portion of their waking hours working. Many employees work at a desk, sitting in the same chair for hours on end using a computer keyboard. Although desk jobs aren't as physically challenging as other types of work, "cubicle" employees may still suffer occupational injuries.

Making physical movements over and over, like typing on a computer, may place you at risk for a repetitive stress injury. Pressure on the nerves and tendons that pass through the "carpal tunnel" of bones and ligaments in the wrists can cause tingling, pain and a loss of sensation or movement from the hands up through the arms.

New Jersey contract worker killed by falling pylon

Workers' compensation benefits are paid by New Jersey employers to cover injuries or illnesses suffered by workers on the job. According to state workers' compensation laws, benefits for medical bills, disability, wage losses and death are extended to workers classified as employees, but not to independent contractors.

By paying workers' comp benefits, most employers have immunity from accident liability claims brought by workers covered by this insurance.

Is filing for New Jersey workers' comp benefits a job risk?

Hackensack employers may not fire workers for the wrong reasons -- reasons that violate an employee's rights. Job terminations due to filings for workers' comp benefits are one of those reasons. However, New Jersey workers' compensation claims do not immunize employees from being fired for legal reasons.

At-will employment rules allow employers to fire most Bergen County workers at any time with or without cause. The only workers not subject to at-will employment laws are employees with job contracts, outlining conditions under which terminations may take place. State laws forbid employers from retaliating against workers simply because employees sought benefits for job-related injuries or illnesses.

What are occupational lung diseases?

The source of some chronic or life-threatening illnesses can be found in Hackensack workplaces. Occupational asthma is one of several lung diseases contracted by working in contaminated environments. Employees who suffer occupational asthma are people who initially develop asthma at work or whose existing asthma is aggravated on the job.

New Jersey was part of a seven-year study to identify jobs with a high risk of occupational asthma. Making up about one-third of all identified victims were fabricators, operators and laborers. More than 20 percent were managers or professionals and another 19 percent were salespeople, office support staff and technical workers.

The national impact of workplace injuries and illnesses

The federal government tracks the number of job-related deaths, injuries and illnesses each year in New Jersey and all other states. The Bureau of Labor Statistics then calculates incidence rates -- the number of fatalities, injuries or illnesses per 100 employees. The most recent reports summarize details related to 2013 non-fatal workplace injuries and illnesses in the private and public sectors.

In 2010, more than 139 million people were in the U.S. civilian workforce. In 2013, over 3 million employees in the private sector suffered reportable illnesses or injuries. Other than 2012, the numbers over 11 years reflected an ongoing nationwide drop in occupational injuries and illnesses.

Subcontractor killed in construction accident at sports arena

Some Hackensack, New Jersey, employees face more dangers commuting than they do at work. Other employees perform tasks in environments, like industrial settings and construction sites, where dangerous conditions are an everyday occurrence. Although employees must be aware of risks, New Jersey employers are responsible for minimizing unsafe working conditions.

A construction accident at Barclays Center -- home court of the Brooklyn Nets, the former New Jersey Nets -- fatally injured a 52-year-old man. reported that the ironworker was part of a crew, working since last fall on a "green roof" installation project. Police said the man, a subcontractor, died at the scene.

Cancer exposure in New Jersey workplaces

New Jersey doctors know a lot more about the development of cancers than they once did. The medical community is aware certain unavoidable and some preventable factors increase cancer risks. Researchers still have not pinpointed exactly why abnormal cells take hold in some people, but many doctors feel cancers occur as the result of a combination of circumstances.

Cancer affects people of certain races, ages and genders more than others. Cancer shows up among people with particular pre-existing medical conditions, evidence of cancer in their genetic histories and poor personal habits, like smoking and use of alcohol. Cancer is also prevalent among people who've suffered exposure to pesticides and other known carcinogens.