Workers’ compensation benefits may help you make ends meet in the short term, but it is probably not enough money to help you face the future if your injury was devastating. When work-related injuries are caused by unreasonably dangerous worksites or defective equipment, injured workers may be able to pursue additional compensation under premises liability or defective products claims.
Imperial Sugar disaster
The 2008 explosion at the Imperial Sugar refinery in Port Wentworth is a prime example of an industrial disaster that, according to the U.S. Chemical Safety Board, could have been prevented with proper dust control and housekeeping procedures. When massive accumulations of sugar dust caught fire, it caused a chain reaction of explosions throughout the refinery, resulting in 14 deaths. Among 38 injured survivors, 14 had serious, life-threatening third-degree burns.
A third-degree burn seriously damages the full thickness of your skin. Victims usually require extensive medical care, including skin grafts and physical therapy to regain the use of burned limbs. Many require additional surgeries during the healing process to alleviate constrictive scar tissue.
Malfunctioning equipment accidents
Injuries caused by defective equipment are another source of devastating work-related injuries. Workers hurt by defective equipment may be entitled to monetary compensation from the equipment manufacturer. Types of equipment that have caused serious injuries to workers include:
Heavy equipment used in construction
Defective safety equipment
Improperly designed conveyor belts
Poor quality tools
Unsafe vehicles, tires and vehicle parts
Aftermarket vehicle accessories used in various industries