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What are some ways to avoid industrial accident injuries?

Each workday, thousands of Maryland industrial workers rely on their power tools to help them do their jobs. Without a doubt, power tools are a boon to the construction and industrial industries because they are a force multiplier when it comes to increasing individual employee productivity. Anyone who has ever attempted to saw a piece of lumber using an old-fashioned ripsaw can attest to the almost magical qualities of an electric circular saw when comparing the two methods.

Unfortunately, the dark side of using power tools is that they are inherently much more dangerous to the user than hand tools. In fact, a 2003 government study found that power tools used in homes and workshops accounted for an average of 400,000 emergency room visits per year.

One of the reasons power tools account for so many injuries is because advances in technology have incorporated the use of electric, hydraulic, compressed air and combustion motors in a wide variety of very useful equipment. These very powerful motors provide power for any manner of devices from riding lawnmowers, post hole augurs, concrete saws and nail guns.

Fortunately, here are some steps you can take to minimize the chance of experiencing an industrial workplace accident:

-- Use clamps to keep your work secure whenever using saws. Never use your hand to secure an item to the bench when using a portable circular saw, jigsaw or similar device.

- -Recognize when you are physically exhausted or overly tired. These are times when you can overlook critical safety steps that could potentially result in serious injuries.

--Don't disable or remove safety devices installed by the manufacturer. Power tools are inherently dangerous devices. Disabling a safety is never a wise move.

Despite the observance of every possible safety procedure, industrial workplace accidents will nevertheless still occur. Fortunately, Maryland law provides legal protections for employees injured while at work. You could receive wage replacement payments and medical benefits as a part of your workers' compensation package. You may even qualify for occupational retraining or disability in some cases where your injuries prevent you from returning to work.

An attorney with experience in Maryland's workers' compensation insurance laws can assist you in pursuing the assistance you need. An attorney can also represent you in appeals cases where your claims have previously been denied.

Source: Forbes, "The Most Dangerous Power Tools," William Baldwin, accessed Aug. 20, 2015

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