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Workers' compensation: Agriculture industry rife with hazards

A recent publication highlighted the many hazards that workers in the agricultural industry face every day. This sector includes farm workers, forestry workers and those working in the fishing industry nationwide -- including in California. Very little thought is spared for their safety, although these sectors play significant roles in providing food and shelter to all. The number of hazards workers face is staggering, but fortunately, most of them can claim workers' compensation benefits if they suffer injuries,

A few of the dangers that are part of the everyday lives of agricultural workers include potentially dangerous machinery, fertilizers, toxic pesticides and excessive noise. All of these employees work in the outdoors, exposing them to extreme weather. Heat-related illnesses such as dehydration, fatigue and heat stroke are common in the summer, and conditions like frostbite and even hypothermia are prevalent in the winter.

The publication mentions the high annual death toll in the forestry industry. Their work typically involves the wielding and manipulation of heavy cutting equipment and machinery in remote areas with no emergency facilities. Common conditions for these workers include hearing loss due to excessive noise, insect-borne diseases, repetitive stress syndrome, hand-arm-vibration syndrome and cumulative damage to backs and joints.

The many hazards these workers face might cause stress and anxiety on the job because of the dire financial situations that can follow debilitating injuries. Fortunately, an experienced California workers' compensation attorney can provide the necessary support and guidance with the filing of benefits claims. Injury claims typically yield coverage of medical expenses and lost wages. Families who have lost loved ones in on-the-job accidents can claim death benefits to cover the costs of end-of-life arrangements along with a financial package to make up for lost income.

Source: news.trust.org, "It's high time to ensure safer conditions for agricultural workers", Sheila Wertz-Kanounnikoff, April 30, 2018

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