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What are the Most Common Causes of Loading Dock Injuries?

by | Oct 26, 2020 | Workers' Compensation

Loading docks can be some of the most dangerous places to work in New York. In 2018, over 6,000 people suffered injuries at loading docks, requiring them to miss work and file for workers’ compensation. How can people remain safe while still getting the job done on time?

How can workers stay safe while working at loading docks?

One of the biggest causes of workplace injuries involves the truck driver pulling the vehicle out of the lot while employees are still unloading cargo. Another frequent cause of injuries is “trailer creep,” which occurs when the truck starts to back away from the dock. This creates a gap that employees might trip on or fall through.

To prevent these types of mishaps, experts recommend using traffic lights that clearly communicate the situation to truck drivers and employees. For example, a red light would indicate that it’s not safe for a truck to back into the loading dock. Clear communication can save lives and prevent injuries.

Another way to prevent accidents is requiring drivers to sit in a waiting area while their truck is being unloaded. This keeps truck drivers from getting in the way or trying to drive off while workers are still unloading the cargo.

What should you do if you’ve suffered from a workplace injury?

In many cases, workplace injuries aren’t the fault of the employee. Maybe your manager told you to complete a task knowing that it was unsafe. Or maybe the facility had an unsafe working environment that was littered with hazards. Whatever the cause, if you weren’t at fault, you might be entitled to workers’ compensation.

An attorney might help you file for workers’ compensation and represent you in court if your employer tries to retaliate. Additionally, an attorney may help you appeal if your claim is denied.