Ford Assembly Workers Injured by Conveyor Belt Accidents
Conveyor belts have made manufacturers run efficiently for more than a century. Conveyor belts may seem straightforward, but unfortunately, accident do happen, and the consequences can be devastating. Ford assembly workers face many different dangers in the course of their work. Among these dangers are conveyor belt accidents, which can result in crushing injuries; burns; abrasions; blunt force trauma; degloving in which the skin is pulled away leaving exposed nerves; amputations; and even death. While Henry Ford is often cited as the first to use assembly lines in mass production, Ford has been cited for safety violations on its assembly lines. Ford assembly workers injured by conveyor belt accidents in Chicago should talk to the seasoned Syracuse equipment accident attorneys of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca.Ford Assembly Workers Injured by Conveyor Belt Accidents
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) mandates that Ford and other auto manufacturers comply with safety rules such as providing employees with personal protective equipment. These employers are also supposed to adequately train their workers. When Ford does not adhere to OSHA regulations, the result can be catastrophic and fatal injuries to workers.
Among the dangers our lawyers see when OSHA regulations are violated include:
- Unguarded conveyor belts
- Belts running at dangerously fast speeds
- Defective or improperly maintained conveyor belts
- Overloaded belts
- Lack of lock out procedures that result in inadvertent activation.
You may be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits if you were injured in a conveyor belt accident while on the job as a Ford assembly worker. For instance, if a conveyor belt was not appropriately assembled and your arm was caught in a pinch point, you may sustain crushing injuries and you may lose use of your arm. Under those circumstances, you may be eligible for reasonable and necessary medical benefits, permanent disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation.
Similarly, if your hand was amputated because of a mechanical failure due to Ford failing to properly maintain a conveyor belt, you may need to obtain reasonable and necessary emergency care and seek regular medical care. If the amputation also resulted in scarring and disfigurement or loss of use of your hand, you may be able to obtain benefits to address this specific loss.
While Ford is required to follow OSHA regulations, the workers’ compensation system does not require you to establish liability. Rather, the benefits available through Ford’s insurer are no-fault benefits. In other words, you will not need to establish your employer’s negligence or misconduct to get benefits, and Ford and its insurer cannot blame you for an accident and thereby get a reduction in the compensation to which you are entitled. These are critical differences between claims for workers’ compensation benefits and personal injury lawsuits for damages filed in Illinois courts.Third-Party Lawsuit in Chicago
Ford may be cited or penalized for its failure to follow regulations that results in a conveyor belt accident. However, workers’ compensation claims and penalties do not fully address the vast scope of losses a worker tends to suffer in the event he or she is injured or killed in a conveyor belt accident. You cannot, for instance, recover noneconomic damages by filing a claim. When someone other than your employer or a coworker was to blame for your injuries, it may be appropriate to pursue both economic and noneconomic damages by filing a third party lawsuit.Hire a Chicago Law Firm that Represents Ford Assembly Workers
Ford is obliged to adequately inspect its assembly lines to protect you from work-related accidents. Unfortunately, notwithstanding its legal responsibilities, Ford, like other employers, does not always do right by its workers. Conveyor belt accidents can have devastating consequences for Ford assembly line workers and their families. In some cases, these accidents are fatal. Our attorneys represent Ford assembly line workers and their families in Champaign, Rockford, Quincy, and Aurora, as well as Sangamon, Winnebago, Kane, Cook, and Adams Counties. We examine cases closely to determine the best available strategy to obtain relief. When appropriate we can pursue not only workers’ compensation benefits in a claim, but also economic and noneconomic damages in a personal injury lawsuit. In some cases, it may be appropriate to make a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits as the result disabling injuries. Call us at 800-444-1525 or 312-263-6330 or complete our online form.