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Springfield Personal Injury & Workers' Compensation Blog

Workers' Compensation Benefits For Firefighters, Paramedics and EMTs

Firefighters, paramedics and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) face unique risks associated with their jobs. They are routinely exposed to loud noises when responding to emergencies. They render medical assistance to accident victims and periodically expose themselves to the bodily fluids of those victims as well as bacteria, viruses and diseases.

Firefighters have the additional risks associated with fighting fires, responding to vehicle accidents, and inhaling the substances created by the fires which then contaminate the clothes they are wearing. Recent studies are pointing to the conclusion that firefighters face an increased risk of cancer and other medical conditions as a result of their job duties, especially fighting fires.

Much more than fire threatens firefighters in Illinois

Firefighters in Springfield and surrounding parts of Illinois frequently risk their lives to save others. However, along with the life-threatening hazards when they rush into burning buildings come a host of health risks not related to burn injuries. If you are a firefighter, you might agree that the rigorous training you receive might prepare you for the various emergencies you might encounter without paying enough attention to the personal health hazards you face.

Your occupation will always involve life-threatening risks, but you might be wise to take precautionary steps to avoid unnecessary exposure to threats that might compromise your personal health.

Will advanced technology ever eliminate pedestrian accidents?

Safety authorities have expressed concern about the nationwide pedestrian crisis, including Springfield and other Illinois cities. You might not be aware of the urgency by which automotive suppliers and manufacturers are tackling development projects to avert pedestrian accidents. There were great strides in the development of technologies to prevent crashes, and exciting plans exist that will focus on pedestrian safety.

Most new cars now come with crash-avoidance systems, safer infotainment systems, lane-departure warnings and even driverless cars -- all to protect occupants of the vehicles. Finally, some industrial manufacturers now focus on pedestrian safety.

Pedestrians are dying, and hit-and-run drivers are to blame

With all of the new technology and safety features in today's motor vehicles, you may think that the roads in Illinois are safer than ever. While the fatality rate has declined since the mid 20th century, it is now on the rise again. Right now, it is especially dangerous for pedestrians.

If you walk along sidewalks or anywhere near a roadway, you need to know that the frequency of hit-and-run pedestrian accidents is alarming many experts. Unfortunately, all of the safety technology in the world does not seem to prevent this terrifying increase of pedestrian deaths.

Potential threats facing chemical manufacturing plant workers

Illinois is the chosen state for hundreds of chemical manufacturers, and thousands of workers rely on their employers to provide work environments that are free of the typical threats of the industry. Sadly, many employers do not prioritize employee safety. If your safety is at risk in your workplace, it might be smart to gain knowledge about potential hazards and devise a strategy to avoid work-related injury and illness.

Although chemical hazards are significant threats that could cause severe injuries and even death, this sector also poses fall risks to mitigate. If you can understand what types of occupational hazards exist in this industry and why accidents occur, you can start working on your own safety strategy.

What can you expect to receive from workers' compensation?

Regardless of the industry in which you work in Springfield, Illinois, there will always be risks of injuries. The chances of suffering traumatic brain injuries if you fall and hit your head against a hard surface are as high in an office as it would be on a construction site. The same applies for other injury types, and knowing that the Illinois workers' compensation insurance program is there to provide financial assistance might provide some level of comfort.

However, without full knowledge and understanding of the types of available benefits, you might be concerned about your financial stability should you suffer a debilitating workplace injury. The nature and severity of your injury will determine the types of benefits you receive.

Common factors that lead to serious car accidents

No one wants to have a normal day interrupted by a car accident. Unfortunately, these incidents do happen on a daily basis across the state of Illinois and elsewhere. As a result, any time you find yourself on the road, whether in the driver's seat or a passenger seat, you face the risk of potentially suffering injuries due to a crash.

The outcomes of an accident are rarely predictable. Many seemingly insignificant factors, such as whether someone was wearing a seat belt, could actually have life or death impacts when a crash takes place. Regrettably, many of these collisions are caused by common factors that have no place on the road.

Ambulance workers must not return too soon after back injuries

Musculoskeletal injuries are par for the course for EMS providers in Illinois. Even though safety authorities say that predictable injuries are preventable, the nature of your job on an ambulance often denies you the chance to think actions through before doing them. The result might be a back injury, and it could be challenging to return to work after such an injury because there will always be a fear of it recurring.

You must accept that recovery of musculoskeletal injuries can take approximately six weeks, and upon return, you must ease yourself into the job again. The correct positioning of your body can prevent a re-injury. Proper posture and technique are crucial, and so is using available equipment such as lifting tools.

You are entitled to protection against heat-related illness

Are you a construction worker in Illinois, or do you work in landscaping, transportation, agriculture or on an oil rig? These are but some of the outdoor jobs that expose workers to the wrath of the sun. Thousands of workers suffer heat-related illnesses every year — some of them do not survive. Just like protecting their employees from exposure to the cold of winter, employers must take steps to protect workers from excessive heat in the summer.

Heat illness is preventable, and safety training can teach workers to recognize the symptoms. Prompt treatment during the initial stages can prevent a worker's condition from deteriorating until it becomes a life-threatening situation.

Is fatigue a threat to your safety as a commercial driver?

If you are a commercial truck driver in Illinois, you might be aware of the many hazards you face on every trip. Fatigue is a significant contributor to the number of truck accidents that occur in Illinois every year. Compliance with the laws that restrict your hours of driving and learning the telltale signs of exhaustion or fatigue might keep you safe behind the wheel of your big rig.

Driver fatigue is more likely to occur if you do not get enough sleep between shifts or before a long trip. Fatigue builds over several days of insufficient sleep, making you more vulnerable toward the end of a long haul.

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