Eye injuries a common problem in the construction industry

On Behalf of | Aug 12, 2021 | Workers' Compensation

Minnesota construction workers are vulnerable to a litany of injuries. Most are associated with falls, falling objects, vehicle collisions or equipment mishaps. However, eye injuries are also common. Whether it damages the worker’s eyesight or causes them to lose their eye entirely, this can severely inhibit their ability to work in the same industry. It could stop them from working at all. It is imperative to understand how eye injuries are covered under workers’ compensation.

Strategies to prevent eye injuries in construction

Prevention is always advisable and there are certain steps that construction workers can take to reduce the chance of suffering eye injuries. Workers who fail to wear basic eye protection leave themselves in jeopardy. It should also be the correct type of protection for the job. There is a difference between everyday prescription glasses and work glasses. Their work glasses should be shatterproof and extend around the eye to avoid penetration from the top, bottom and sides.

There will be inevitable wear and tear. Maintaining eye protection is key. If necessary, it should be replaced. An inability to see because of dirt and grime could cause an accident, so the eye protection should be kept clean. It is easy to forget that during work. Proper storage will help maintain the equipment and prevent inadvertent damage during transport. Goggles are an appealing alternative to conventional glasses due to their full coverage durability. Finally, being flexible as to what type of eye protection to wear based on the project can ensure that the right item is being used.

If eye injuries happen, workers should understand their rights

Statistically, an estimated 20% of job-related eye injuries happen during construction work. This is a frequent basis for workers’ compensation claims.

Given the potential long-term and permanent damage work-related eye injuries do, it is imperative to know the basics of workers’ compensation and how it will provide for medical coverage and in some cases a percentage of lost wages. Immediately after the injury, it is wise to have guidance throughout the workers’ compensation process to have a good chance of being approved.