Administrators with the North Carolina Department of Transportation said they have planned meetings with traffic engineers and officials with local governments in Mecklenburg County after a spate of crashes on the I-77 toll lane that is under construction. construction

According to, there was an uptick of 400 crashes last year in comparison to the three previous years. There was no one kind of crash that occurred in particular – rear-end collisions, sideswipes and crashes with fixed objects all rose in frequency in this entire construction zone. In the active work zone areas, it was even worse. There was a nearly 85 percent increase in the number of sideswipe crashes in this segment, and fixed object crashes were up more than 60 percent.

NCDOT said it plans to dispatch safety units and traffic engineers to conduct an analysis of what can be done to improve safety along this corridor. Officials did note that while crashes in construction zones tend to be more common than in other areas, they tend to be less severe and less likely to result in injury or fatalities. This often has to do with the fact that people may be traveling at lower speeds, but often in traffic patterns that are unfamiliar or even confusing.  Continue reading

The estate of a school teacher who died of mesothelioma can hold the school district liable that she for worked at the time of her alleged exposure to asbestos. teacher

That’s according to a ruling by the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, which ruled that so long as the exposure leading to illness fell within one of the exceptions to governmental immunity, the case can proceed. The case is noteworthy for the fact that often, suing an employer for workplace injuries is barred under workers’ compensation exclusivity rules.

According to the case’s court records , plaintiff worked for the district as a high school mathematics teacher for a single year in the late 1950s. At the time, she was allegedly exposed to asbestos coming from dust in the pipes found in stairways, classrooms and hallways of the school. Of course, at that time many schools were constructed with asbestos-laden materials, including floor tiles, ceiling tiles and insulation. This was especially true for those who worked in the schools, those who were exposed to it day after day for years. Continue reading

A variable wage worker is one for whom wages are not consistent from month-to-month, week-to-week or sometimes day-to-day. The most common example of this is tipped workers, or those who rely on tips for the majority of their pay. Restaurant workers and those in the service industry usually top this list. server

When these employees are hurt on-the-job, the question of what they should receive in compensation is often a tricky one. Workers’ compensation is based on a percentage of a worker’s average weekly wage – specifically 66 and 2/3 percent the average weekly wage, not to exceed $978 a week as of 2017. As workers’ compensation lawyers, we usually can get this information easily for salaried workers. However, we often have to look more closely in cases where a worker receives variable wages or when he or she recently earned a raise or changed positions.

In a recent case before the Kentucky Supreme Court, the question regarding whether a worker was salaried or made variable wages was in question, as she had changed jobs in the months before the work injury.  Continue reading

A gas station clerk who was shot and seriously injured while in his personal vehicle outside the store will be allowed to collect workers’ compensation for his injuries. That’s according to a ruling from the state’s Commonwealth Court, which held the injuries inflicted by violence were work-related, even though he was preparing to leave for the night, and he wasn’t technically on site. gun

The justices looked carefully at evidence tending to indicate the shooting was retribution by the family members of a woman who had been arrested for shoplifting.

According to, the plaintiff was shot soon after he was threatened by the woman’s relatives.

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The North Carolina workers’ compensation law entitles employees injured on the job to receive reasonable and necessary medical expenses for their injuries. This includes, per the General Assembly’s amendment to the Workers’ Compensation Act in 2011, attendant care services, which may be provided by a family member or other loved one. In many cases, the person has to give up their job (often a much better-paying one), but it is usually no less of a “job.” hands

Attendant care is a type of hands-on assistance with a person’s functional needs, including activities of daily living. It could mean helping with meals or shopping, keeping house, bathing, managing finances, and helping a person take their medications. Often, it’s the same type of service that may be offered in an assisted living center, but not quite so intensive and from the person’s private residence.

In a recent case before the North Carolina Court of Appeals, the justices were asked to consider if the North Carolina Industrial Commission was wrong to grant attendant services benefits to the mother of a worker who suffered an on-the-job traumatic brain injury years earlier.

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While there is a potential for any worker to be injured on the job, some are at higher risk than others, given the industry in which they work or the type of job they do. worker

However, some workers are at a statistically higher risk on the basis of their skin color or their ethnic or national origin. That’s according to a new study conducted by researchers at The University of Southern California. Study authors included experts in health policy, economics, and medicine.

Researchers opined the cause may be disparities in economic opportunities that lead them to take on jobs that are more dangerous and heighten their risk of injuries and subsequent disabilities.

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Although occupational illness isn’t specific to any industry, there are inevitably some professions that are at higher risk for exposure to certain toxic substances or materials that can be harmful. One of these dangerous jobs is firefighting.firefighters

Not only are firefighters exposed to intense heat and smoke, but also they have direct exposure to the public. Additionally, they may have direct exposure to harmful building materials, such as lead and asbestos, that are known to cause debilitating conditions – even cancer.

Firefighters, police officers, and other first responders and government workers seeking workers’ compensation should speak to an attorney, since there may be some special considerations. Even volunteer firefighters and first responders are covered under state statute, although there are sometimes challenges in ensuring there are adequate funds to pay these claims.

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The law in North Carolina requires workplaces that have three or more employees – regardless of whether they are full-time or part-time – to secure workers’ compensation for those workers. work boots

Approximately 70,000 workers were injured on the job in North Carolina last year. Many people assume that if they are injured at work, they’ll be covered by workers’ compensation, a no-fault system that covers medical bills and lost wages.

Unfortunately, according to a new report from WSOC-TV, tens of thousands of businesses in the state aren’t offering the coverage – defying legal requirements.

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In an appellate case before the South Carolina Court of Appeals, a construction worker fought against the workers’ compensation commission’s ruling to deny him benefits after he was injured at work. Unfortunately, the appellate court affirmed that ruling. The court found the commission did not err in finding that the plaintiff failed to apply the presumption the injury in question arose out of and occurred in the course of employment and that the worker didn’t establish a cause for the injury. truck wheel

According to court records, the plaintiff began working for the defendant construction company in 2007 as an operator of heavy equipment. The accident happened five years later, in the spring. His co-workers discovered him lying motionless on his back next to his dump truck. He would later testify he had no knowledge of what happened or how he came to be on the ground. Two co-workers testified they didn’t see him in or near the truck prior to the fall, but he insisted that he was up in the truck at some point before he fell and that he was seen by at least two of his co-workers.

One co-worker testified the plaintiff washed his truck with a pressure washer and then went into an adjacent building to retrieve his backpack and cooler. It was shortly after this time the plaintiff was discovered supine on the ground. It was unclear for exactly how long he was there, although one co-worker testified it couldn’t have been more than four minutes. His backpack and cooler were found on the seat of the truck with the door still open.

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Regulators at the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) have fined an Alabama company $2.5 million in connection with a fatal workplace accident at an auto manufacturing plant.  OSHA’s Region 4 regulators (who also police safety violations in North Carolina and South Carolina) noted that the 20-year-old temporary worker had been planning for her wedding at the time of her death. machine shop

According to the investigators’ findings, the workplace accident involved a robotic machine. The manufacturer was responsible for stamping metal parts for the vehicles of two auto makers. On the day in question, the assembly line suddenly stopped. The decedent and three of her co-workers entered the robotic station to clear the faulty sensor. However, the robot started again abruptly. The three other workers were able to make it out fast enough, but the decedent was not. Her death occurred just two weeks before she was to be married.

An investigation by OSHA led the agency to issue 23 willful, serious, and other-than-serious violations against the company, including 19 willful violations. OSHA defines a “willful” violation as one in which the employer displayed a purposeful disregard by either knowingly failing to comply with a legal requirement or else acting with outright indifference to the safety of workers.

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