Transportation Incidents a Common Cause of Fatal Work Injuries in North Carolina

The Network of Employers for Traffic Safety (NETS) will soon be observing its yearly safety campaign Drive Safely Work Week (DSWW), which reminds workers about safe driving practices.

Last month our North Carolina workers’ compensation lawyers in Asheville posted on our North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog that transportation accidents are the leading cause of workplace deaths.
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NETS was founded in 1989 and is a non-profit group made up of private and public companies that promotes traffic safety on the job. DSWW is observed nationally during the first week of October, but the campaign’s materials can be used year round. Material from the campaign doesn’t just focus on what to do to prevent distracted driving incidents when you are the driver, but also for passengers on the job.

Accidents can happen at work both inside the office or warehouse, but also for those who have to drive for a living. Both drivers and passengers can be at risk for these types of workplace incidents, so it’s important for everyone to take care when traveling on the job.

The following is some of the informational material DSWW provides for:

Driver
A Virginia Tech driving study indicates that you increase your risk of crashing by 23 times if you are texting; reaching for an object increases the risk by 9 times; and dialing a cell phone puts your risk at 6 times. Here’s how you can lower risk for having a distracted driving crash:
-Never text and drive. Put your cell phone in the trunk while you are driving.
-Make sure you and your passengers buckle up and secure objects you are transporting like packages, animals, or personal computers.
-Know where you are going; being lost is very distracting. Use a voice navigation device and never read a map while driving.
-If you can’t have your phone out of reach at least have call-blocking technology so calls can’t get through until you are done driving.
-Give yourself plenty of following distance and adjust accordingly to changing road conditions.
-Adjust your radio and climate controls before you start to drive and never drive while using headphones. If you happen to be in a rental car make sure you know the locations of the wiper and light controls. Don’t try to find them while you are driving.

Passenger
-Be in charge of the driver’s cell phone don’t let it be a distraction. Try not to make or receive calls when you are a passenger. If you must use your phone make it a quick call.
-If you feel the driver is acting in an unsafe manner, speak up. Hurt feelings are easier to heal than broken bones.
-Never block the driver’s view on the right, if they can’t see clearly let them know when it is safe to proceed.
-Be the map reader, road sign reader and landmark finder.
-Don’t get into serious or drawn out conversations with the driver.

If you or someone you love has been in a work-related traffic accident or is dealing with a workers’ compensation issue contact the Lee Law Offices, P.A. for help regarding your case. Call 1-800-887-1965 for a free initial consultation to discuss your rights today.

Additional Resources:

Experienced North Carolina Law Firm Can Help with Complicated Workers’ Compensation Claims in North Carolina, South Carolina, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, September 12, 2011.

New Phone App Can Help Prevent Work-Related Heat Illness at Asheville Job Sites and Elsewhere, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, August 22, 2011.

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