Loading Dock Injuries in Nevada
Everything we use and that we get from stores must be shipped from one place to another.
This shipping is a very confusing and difficult process as we all have seen since Covid began.
Even though forced lockdown is over, we are still stuck with shipping and logistic issues.
Many people are not aware of what actually goes on to get the goods to the stores where the average American buys them.
When shipping products truck drivers pick products up from one place and deliver them to another.
But this involves many people doing many jobs and at the heart of the operation is the loading dock worker.
The loading dock operator is responsible for operating heavy machinery and loading all goods to and from trucks.
These jobs at loading docks can be very dangerous due the machinery needed to load and unload trucks, the sheer volume of products being loaded and the fast paced environment on a loading dock.
These jobs are highly skilled careers and loading docks operators are usually paid well but they take a serious risk of injury or death everyday.
Even though there are safety procedures that are in place by most employers and safety laws that the government regulates, accidents happen all the time.
If you were injured while working at a loading dock in Nevada call Richard Harris Today.
Sspeak with an attorney who knows workers compensation laws before you speak with your employers insurance company.
Types of Loading Dock Accidents
Loading docks are big places with fast paced environments with lots of merchandise in and out and deadlines for moving that merchandise.
Since this is the case loading dock areas of warehouses are grounds for many different workplace accidents.
Some of the more common loading sock workplace accidents are:
- Caught in between- This is when a loading dock worker gets stuck between two pieces of equipment. For example the worker could get trapped between the back of a tractor trailer and the loading dock itself, or a worker gets stuck in between a pallet and a forklift. This is the most common of this type of accident. Stuck between accidents can result in serious injury including crushing injuries and in some cases even death.
- Workers getting hit- Workers can be hit by truck drivers that don’t see the dock worker or the fork lift operator , other falling equipment can stick a worker at any time. These injuries can be anything from Traumatic Brain injuries to back and neck injuries.
- Falling accidents- Fall incidents including falling off the loading dock itself, mostly happens during raining or other inclement weather. Most loading docks are around 4 feet off the ground and falling accidents can be quite common. This can also include falling merchandise or equipment that hits a dock worker.
- Trailer separation accidents- This happens when a tractor trailer pulls up to the loading dock to either drop a trailer full of goods off or drops an empty trailer that needs to be filled by the dock workers. When a trailer separates from a truck cab and everyone isn’t properly prepared serious injury can occur. These accidents are caused by
- Not following the warehouse dock safety policies
- Failure to set breaks
- No safety equipment in place
- If safety equipment was in palace failure to use it properly
- Miscommunication between dock workers and truck drivers
- Weight shifting of the truck
Who is Responsible for Loading Dock Safety
The responsibility for a loading dock safety depends on the circumstances of the merchandise being loaded.
If the driver of the truck is only driving one particular item for example couches and all that driver does is move furniture for a furniture store then the driver is responsible for checking and securing the load of furniture before traveling.
If on the other hand the driver has multiple stops and picks up a variety of items to fill a truck the warehouse and loading dock employees are responsible for the security of the merchandise.
Items are usually stored on loading docks on pallets or cages for easy loading with the use of a pallet jack or forklift.
This equipment can sometimes malfunction and the warehouse in some cases the pallet jack or forklift company may be held responsible for your injuries.
The warehouse can also be held liable for damages when not following general safety rules or federal safety laws.
An experienced personal injury attorney can determine who is ultimately responsible for your injuries in a loading dock accident.
Injured in a Loading Dock Accident at work
There are a few steps that we advise you to take when injuries in a loading dock accident:
- Seek medical attention immediately no matter what. Even if you don’t think that you need to see a doctor you should always go immediately after an accident. You may have injuries that are not visible like a concussion or internal injuries. Also injuries like neck and back back injuries can worsen without medical treatment.
- Immediately report the accident to your employer, you should report the incident to your immediate supervisor and human resources.
- Follow all your employer’s procedures for reporting the incident and getting medical treatment. Most employers have specific doctors or hospitals that their employees must go to when injured on the job. This is due to workers compensation insurance.
- Document everything and keep good records of everything.
- Contact a personal injury attorney that has experience in workers compensation cases.
Workers Compensation Insurance
Workers compensation insurance is required for all businesses in Nevada.
Workers compensation insurance is insurance paid by your employer that covers all employees while they are working.
This insurance is only used when a worker is hurt on the job.
That’s why some employers require you to go to certain doctors because these doctors are part of the workers comp package.
If you choose to go to your own doctor you may have to pay out of pocket until your case is resolved.
Workers comp insurance requires lots of paperwork and deadlines.
Workers compensation will cover medical expenses and a portion of your wages when injured on the job.
That’s why hiring a personal injury attorney that specializes in workers compensation cases.
An experienced workers comp attorney can file all the necessary paperwork with the workers comp insurance company and can often determine if more than one party is responsible for your work related injuries.
Third Party liability in loading dock accidents
Since loading dock areas are always in and out.
There might be multiple companies working in the same area for example at the local industrial complex, many companies rent warehouse space that might funnel into one loading dock area.
This means the victim of a loading dock accident might have multiple parties to file claims against.
If you are injured while working a loading dock it is possible to file negligence claims against multiple parties if you feel they are partially responsible for your injuries.
Besides dealing with your employers workers compensation insurance you may have to file a claim against the following;
The manufacturer or the reseller of faulty or malfunctioning equipment
The owner of the warehouse where hazardous or unsafe conditions exists
Truck driver or trucking company
These are all parties that may be held responsible for some or all of your injuries. Having a consultation with a personal injury attorney can determine who to file a claim against.
Call The Richard Harris Law Firm
If you or a loved one has been injured in a loading dock accident call The Richard Harris Law Firm today as soon as possible.
We can review your case with a free consultation.
We can determine what parties we may file against to be held accountable for your injuries.
When we take your case we will file all your workers compensation insurance paperwork to file a workers comp claim.
We will prepare you for what may take place with your case and what to expect from your case and your workers comp claim.
We will attend all court or mediation hearings with our clients.
We will get you the maximum settlement available by law.
We have been working with workers comp cases for over 40 years in Las Vegas and all of Nevada.