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Traumatic brain injury can occur in any workplace

Although certain industries are more dangerous than others, head injuries can occur in any workplace. A New Jersey office worker can slip or trip and knock his or her head against the floor, or a steel bar can hit a construction worker's head. The Brain Injury Institute says one in five occupational traumatic brain injuries are caused by falls in the workplace, from slipping on spilled coffee to tripping on uneven walkways and falling from heights.

It is suggested that the high number of brain injury incidents among workers may be partly due to the large number of older employees in the U.S. workforce. Reportedly, the percentage of the workers older than 65 years have increased by over 100 percent over the past 30 years. They are not only less steady on their feet, but their injuries tend to be more serious than in younger workers.

According to the Institute, the most dangerous industry for TBIs is construction, followed by transportation and agriculture. Then comes forestry and fishing, and surprisingly, emergency medical services. In addition to slip or trip-and-fall accidents, TBI in the workplace can be caused by falling objects, equipment and machinery accidents, exposure to toxic chemicals and more.

Along with wearing adequate personal protective equipment, workers are urged to avoid operating machines or driving vehicles when they are fatigued, and never to use mobile devices while working. A traumatic brain injury could prevent a victim from returning to the same job as before the injury, in which case the New Jersey workers' compensation may offer vocational rehabilitation to teach new skills that will accommodate the injured worker's physical limitations. Those who can never work again are typically entitled to long-term benefits.

Source: bisociety.org, "How TBI Can Happen in the Workplace", Jacob Masters, Accessed on July 22, 2017

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