New Study Gives Insight into How Body Reacts when Falling

Posted: November 21st, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Fall Injuries, Illinois workers comp, Ladder Fall Injury, Slip and Fall, Workers Compensation Insurance, Workplace Injury | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off

workplace falling injury, Illinois workers compensation lawyerResearchers from Ohio State University recently conducted a study on how the human body moves by walking. The study, titled “A Step in the Right Direction” was published last month in the journal Biology Letters. The results of the study can help gain insight in how to prevent falls, which is one of the most common causes of workplace injuries.

The research team studied how people walk by watching them on a treadmill. There were 10 participants of the study, who were fitted with motion caption markers which tracked them as they walked on the treadmills. Participants were instructed to walk from a relaxed pace all the way to a pace of about two to three miles per hour.

As we walk, we put each foot at slightly different position with each step, in what appears to be random placement of our feet. But the researchers in this study were able to take the data gathered from the motion caption markers and come up with a mathematical model that can predict the placement of the next step over 80 percent of the time. These predictions can be made by watching the small variations in a person’s pelvis as they are walking.

As one of the researchers described it, each step we take as we walk is a balancing act to keep from going too far forward or too far sideways. Think of every step as a tiny fall in which we quickly regain stability. The method we use to take a step is a miniscule version of the larger moves our bodies make when we are losing our balance, such as in a fall.

The study team plans on continuing their research with more studies regarding the stability and control the human body uses in walking and hope to use their findings in possible aid in diagnosing and treating balance conditions.

According to another study, last year, falls were the second most common cause of workplace injuries. The cost of these falls is approximately $70 billion per year in medical costs and workers’ compensation. Some of the most common causes of falls include:

  • Floors that need to be repaired;
  • Spills;
  • Loose rugs or mats;
  • Weather hazards;
  • Inappropriate footwear; and
  • Lack of training for employees.

If you or a loved one has suffered a workplace injury, you need an experienced Illinois workers’ compensation attorney to represent you and make sure you receive the compensation you are entitled to under the law.


Ladders Cause Deadly Falls

Posted: June 17th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Construction Accident, Construction Workers, Illinois workers comp, Ladder Fall Injury | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

ladder safety, CDC, construction accident, lawyer, ladder fall, attorney, workers compensationAs summer approaches, construction and repair workers can be found in increasing numbers across Illinois perched on ladders to complete their work. New research from the Centers for Disease Control says that a ladder fall on the job can cause injury or death, and they may make up a significant portion of preventable workers’ compensation claims.

Ladder Falls can be Deadly

According to their data analysis, which was recently published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, nearly half of all falls that have resulted in death in the last ten years involved a ladder. Ladders are a critical source of unintended injuries on worksites, especially in the construction industry.

Although ladders are risky for use in the home, professionals can find themselves the victims of critical on-the-job injuries involving ladders. More than 80 percent of emergency hospital visits for fall incidents in the workplace were linked to ladder usage.

OSHA places certain regulations on any employer whose employees perform work at heights, although in an accident, the height of the ladder is not the most important factor. According to the CDC research, more than 45 percent of all ladder fatalities happened when the fall was between six and fifteen feet.

Ladder falls were most common in extraction and construction industries, and the smallest companies had the highest rates of ladder injuries. It is up to employers whose employees work on scaffolding or ladders to educate their employees on safety and proper use of equipment, as well as to inspect the equipment and ensure that it is up to regulations.

Preventing Ladder Accidents

Employers can do a lot to prevent the prevalence of injuries in the workplace by properly educating all workers about ladder safety. Many people underestimate the impact of a ladder fall from a shorter height, but safety precautions and education can help to improve workplace safety and reduce devastating injuries or deaths.

Both portable and extension ladders pose different safety hazards to employees. A new app from the CDC is meant to increase ladder safety for anyone with a smartphone who is using an extension ladder. The free app allows  the user to ensure the ladder is set at the correct angle to safely be used, and provides ladder safety tips to the user.

Contacting an Attorney

In some cases, if you have sustained an injury from a ladder fall at work, you may be eligible for compensation. If your loved one has been killed, your family may be eligible for compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. Contact an Illinois workers’ compensation attorney who can explain your rights today.