Commercial truck drivers in California haul their cargo loads across the country, facing many more hazards than those presented by road accidents. Truckers are typically exposed to a variety of risks that could lead to workplace injuries -- to both health and body. Occupational illnesses, injuries and fatalities in the transport industry can occur inside and outside the cabs of the trucks.
According to a study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most of the lost workdays for truck operators are caused by overexertion and its impact on their bodies. Accidents involving falls after slip or trip incidents reportedly make up almost a third of the injuries, and contact with other equipment or objects also causes a significant percentage of injuries. Transportation-related injuries such as those suffered in road accidents represented the lowest percentage of casualties.
Drivers often suffer the consequences of sitting in static positions while driving for many hours, these periods of inactivity make them more vulnerable when they load and unload the goods they transport, which often involves heavy lifting. The walking surfaces in loading docks could be slippery, and failure to take care when exiting the cab or jumping from the trailer can also lead to injuries. Along with all the physical hazards, truckers are often exposed harsh and extreme weather conditions.
Drivers of commercial vehicles often make the mistake of avoiding medical care after suffering workplace injuries when they are away from their hometowns because they would rather complete the trip and get back to see their own doctors. Typically, the sooner medical treatment starts, the sooner will be the recovery. Nevertheless, truckers who suffer work-related injuries are usually entitled to claim benefits from the California workers' compensation insurance program, and they can use the help of an experienced attorney to provide the necessary support and guidance throughout the complicated claims process.