Keeping Workers Safe From Conveyor Belt Injuries
Conveyor belt accidents often lead to severe injuries
Warehouses, factories, and many other manufacturing facilities use conveyor belts to move boxes and other products throughout the building.
Unfortunately, conveyor belt systems can be dangerous and cause serious and sometimes fatal workplace injuries.
If you sustained an injury due to a conveyor belt accident, you have the right to seek workers’ compensation benefits. However, actually getting the money you rightfully deserve can be much more complicated than you might expect.
An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you navigate the system and fight for the compensation you're entitled to under Pennsylvania law.
Conveyor belt accident statistics
Workplace injuries involving conveyor belt systems happen far too often. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), an estimated 9,000 people sustain an injury in a conveyor belt accident every year.
Conveyor belt accidents result in an estimated 40 to 50 deaths each year as well, according to BLS workplace accident statistics.
Why do conveyor belt accidents happen?
Workplace accidents involving conveyor belts can happen due to a combination of negligence or reckless behavior in the workplace. In particular, conveyor belt accidents can happen for the following reasons:
- Safety training is not provided by the company. Employees need to know how to safely operate the conveyor belt system.
- Routine inspections are not performed by the company. This may result in a conveyor belt malfunction.
- The conveyor belt is not properly maintained or repaired. Worn out and broken components can cause the whole system to fail.
- The conveyor belt is overloaded. Overloading the conveyor belt can lead to objects on the machine falling off and hitting employees.
- The conveyor belt is operating at an unsafe speed. This can cause items to fall off the system. It can also result in very serious injuries if a worker gets entangled in the machinery.
- A manufacturing defect by the company that made the conveyor belt. Again, if the system isn't functioning correctly, it puts workers at risk of injury.
Some of the most common injuries associated with conveyor belt accidents are:
- Bone fractures or broken bones, especially in the arm, hand, or foot.
- Amputation of the arm or hand, especially if either becomes caught inside the conveyor belt.
- Head injuries, including concussions and other types of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), especially if an object falls off a conveyor belt and strikes someone in the head.
- Degloving injuries, in which the skin is ripped away from someone’s body.
- Fatal conveyor belt accidents, resulting in death.
Whatever type of conveyor belt injury you sustained, make sure you receive immediate medical care. Then, talk to a lawyer right away to learn more about your legal rights and options.
Our workers' comp team is ready to fight for you
At Vellner Law, PC, we can make sure your workplace injury receives the attention it rightfully deserves. Our attorneys have been fighting for injured workers in Allentown, Bethlehem, and all of Lehigh Valley since 1991.
We know how the workers’ compensation system works in Pennsylvania, and we know how to build strong cases that get results.