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Older Workers May Be More Susceptible to Death in a Workplace Injury, Study Finds

DeathBaby boomers are enjoying longer and healthier lives, which means they can work well past the standard retirement age of 65. Some choose to do so because they would rather work than stay home. Others feel they need more time to build their nest egg. Unfortunately, all are considered to have an increased risk of workplace fatality. Learn why this is and what options you may have if someone you love has been killed in a work-related accident.

A Closer Look at the Statistics

In an analysis of federal statistics, the Associated Press found that nearly 35 percent of all workplace fatalities involved a person over the age of 55. Even more disturbing is the significant rise in fatal work injuries among this group. While, overall, workplace fatalities have decreased by 22 percent since 2006, older workers had a slight increase in their overall fatality rate during that same time-period. They are also 50 to 65 percent more likely to experience fatality after a work injury than their younger working counterparts. Why is this happening, and can anything be done to stop it? Perhaps, but that requires a closer look at the true cause of most work-related deaths and injuries – employer negligence.

Employer Negligence and Workplace Fatality

Workplace safety should be a top priority in America, but the workers’ compensation system has created a sort of vacuum when it comes to accountability. Until injuries or deaths occur, no one knows that employees are being forced to work in unsafe conditions. Take, for example, the death of a 58-year-old California man. He died after crashing a forklift that he was not certified to drive. Had his employer provided proper training and enforced the use of seatbelts, they might have prevented his death. That, in and of itself, is negligence. When adding in that the employee was an older individual, their actions seem downright deplorable.

Understanding the Risks of Older Workers

Older workers bring value and knowledge to their respective fields, but their bodies are not as agile as they once were. Physical labor can be more difficult, and even seemingly minor injuries can morph into serious ones. Older workers may also have vision issues, balance problems, brittle bones, arthritis, and hearing problems that increase their overall risk of injury. Does that mean they should not be permitted to work? Absolutely not! Instead, employers should be focusing on workplace safety and reasonable accommodations for their older workforce.

Contact Our San Jose Work Injury Lawyers

If someone you love has suffered a fatality because of employer negligence, contact Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP for assistance. Dedicated and experienced, our San Jose work injury lawyers will fight for you. In every situation, we aggressively pursue the most favorable outcome possible. Learn more about how we can assist with your case by scheduling a free initial consultation. Call (408) 289-1417 today.

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