The construction trades remain some of the most dangerous jobs in the United States. Workers’ compensation can be very important to people like boilermakers, carpenters and masons. Welders can be especially vulnerable to injury on the job due to the volatile nature of the materials they work with. In Pennsylvania, welders should be particularly aware of hazards on the job and of how workers’ compensation works.
A risky business
Welding involves gases and flames, so it’s easy to see how injuries can occur on the job. Luckily, modern welders have more reliable gear and better personal protective equipment than ever before. Plenty of safety checklists have also been published. Implementing those steps each working day can greatly decrease the risk of injury for welders.
One of the biggest risks faced by welders isn’t flame related. Instead, it’s about the gases used in the trade and the fumes they produce. Respiratory problems and even increased rates of cancer have been traced back to fume inhalation during welding work. It’s important for welders to only work in properly ventilated areas while wearing necessary protection.
The most serious risk for working welders is electrocution. Electrode holders can pose serious risks, especially in areas where water is also present. Only qualified technicians should attempt to fix welding equipment. Welders who try to work on their own gear sometimes get seriously injured. It’s always important to visually inspect electrode holders and other welding tools.
Welders who have been hurt on the job may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. It may be a good idea to seek help from a lawyer when preparing this kind of claim. Attorneys might help clients understand exactly what format the state is looking for and what common pitfalls keep claims from being accepted.