Diesel mechanics in Colorado and other states face numerous injury hazards on a daily basis. Although it is the duty of their employers to provide safe workplace environments and address known safety hazards, the nature of the work is hazardous. Whenever a mechanic is injured at work, his or her financial stability may be threatened.
The hazards diesel mechanics face include the dangers of lifting heavy parts that must be maneuvered into place. Many of the jobs they do require them to contort their bodies while bending, stretching, stooping or twisting. Back and muscle injuries can result from making these movements while lifting heavy items. Hand injuries are often caused by working in tight spaces, and lacerations, cuts, bruises and burn injuries are common. Dropped equipment or heavy parts that are difficult to grip securely could cause crushing injuries to toes or fracture foot bones.
Dangers posed by equipment include lathes, winches, welding torches and grinders along with other power tools, booms and hoists. The work environments of diesel mechanics are hardly ever air conditioned or heated, and some work outside in extreme weather conditions. Roadside service also poses the risk of being struck by other vehicles. Then there are the risks posed by diesel that can enter the bloodstream through the skin, and dangerous fumes are inhaled. This could lead to skin conditions, and long-term exposure can lead to cancer, kidney damage and blood clotting disorders.
Fortunately, any employee who is injured at work can pursue financial relief through the Colorado workers’ compensation insurance program. Along with coverage of medical expenses, the insurance program typically includes a wage-replacement package. This is included in the benefits of employees who suffered injuries that caused temporary disabilities.
Source: chron.com, “What Are the Dangers of Diesel Mechanics?“, Jeffrey Joyner, Accessed on Feb. 3, 2017