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The top 3 injuries that workers suffer in a winter snowstorm

When winter weather strikes, employees in snow-prone regions, like New York, often must commute and work in hazardous conditions. Icy sidewalks, heavy snow piles, and dangerous roads can easily lead to injuries during or traveling to and from work.

After nearly 20 years of handling workers’ compensation cases, we’ve seen certain patterns of workplace accidents arise during snowstorms and blizzards time and time again.

Here are the three most common injuries suffered by workers during winter storms:


#1. Slips and Falls on Icy Surfaces

Slip and fall accidents frequently spike after snowstorms. Workers arrive at the office to find parking lots, sidewalks, stairs, and other walkways covered in snow and ice. If these areas are not properly plowed, shoveled, salted, and sanded, they can become extremely slick and hazardous.

Compounding matters, snowplowed mounds block sight lines, and footing can be uneven. Employees may suffer wrist fractures, head injuries, hip fractures, and other harm from slipping on untreated icy patches. Proper maintenance to clear snow and increase traction is essential.


#2. Shoulder Injuries From Shoveling

While plows and snow blowers can handle large expanses, workers often must shovel snow themselves around entrances, walkways, and parked vehicles. The repetitive motion of shoveling heavy, wet snow puts tremendous strain and can cause shoulder injury.

Rotator cuff tears are very common, as are pulled muscles, ligaments, or tendons in the neck, upper back, and arms from repetitive lifting and twisting. Proper shoveling techniques, stretching, and taking breaks can reduce harm.


#3. Motor Vehicle Accidents

Snowy roads and reduced visibility during storms frequently contribute to auto accidents involving commuters and workers driving for business purposes. Icy conditions make it easier to lose control while blowing snow hampers visibility, even if driving slowly and cautiously.

Many accidents also occur when snow and ice fly off moving vehicles and impair sight lines for others. Defensive driving techniques, proper vehicle maintenance, and clearing snow before traveling are musts.


Seeking Workers’ Compensation for Storm-Related Injuries

If you are injured while commuting or working during a snowstorm, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Our firm has extensive experience securing wage replacement, medical treatment, and other compensation for clients injured by snow and ice hazards.

Contact us for a free consultation if you have suffered any storm-related harm – we will fully evaluate your legal options and ensure you get properly compensated for your losses. Don’t weather this storm alone.

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