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A Brief Look Back at 2010: Work-Related Injuries

Workers who sustain work-related injuries have a right to workers' compensation. Workers' compensation claims can be very complicated; dealing with insurance companies is a challenge. Another thing injured workers must consider is how quickly they can return to work after an injury.

Looking back at 2010, there were several national stories that centered on workplace injuries. In many of those situations, it is unclear whether the injured workers filed workers' compensation claims.

Oil Spills

Many Americans will recall the ongoing problems of oil spills in gulfs and oceans. Most notably problematic was the BP oil catastrophe. 11 workers were killed in the explosion. The fatal accident likely injured many more.

Another explosion occurred at a refinery in a state on the west coast. Four individuals were killed and more were hurt in the blast. While the article does not clearly state why the explosions were occurring, it was reported that there was a trend of serious accidents in U.S. oil refineries.

Mines Collapsing

The mine collapse in West Virginia was perhaps one of the biggest stories of the year after 29 mine workers were killed. The company that owned the mine did provide benefits to the families who lost loved ones in the collapse.

When workers are killed in a work accident, their family can often obtain compensation in the form of death benefits. The families of the minors probably relied on the minors financially. Death benefits can help to compensate for that lost support.

Despite these highly reported accidents, research shows that in 2010 more government workers take time off work for injuries than those in the private sector.

Source: Insurance Journal online, "Top Workers' Compensation News in 2010," 04 January 2011

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