Posts by Roberto

Questions about workplace injury

Posted by on Oct 12, 2017 in Workplace | 0 comments

I’ve got a legal dilemma, but I don’t want to go to a lawyer and pay to ask, so I’m going to try and just post it here and see if I can’t get a bit of free advise from you all.

I work for a company based in California (no names here, because I don’t want anyone to see this and get me in trouble). I’m biased here, but I do go on business trips regularly to other branches. My work is mostly in consulting with those branches to see how they can better align with the expectations and goals of the headquarters in California. Simple and straightforward, right?

Well, my position is a little nebulous as a consultant. It isn’t clear whether I’m in charge or the branch boss is, which can lead to a butting of heads at times.

I was in Iowa recently, in Des Moines, and one of those branch heads decided to pull rank and try to humiliate me after I’d laid into him—ill-advisedly, I admit—in front of a couple of his colleagues about some major slip-ups that were occurring on his watch.

To humiliate me, he demanded I do several menial tasks. Since part of my job is to “assist the branch in any way within your capabilities” (he quoted this to me more than once), I had little choice in the short-term to comply.

One of those tasks, however, resulted in my straining a muscle pretty severely. I reported this at the time, but I’m not sure the branch head recorded it. I did call back to headquarters and mention it as well.

The problem is this. I’ve flown back to California and seen my doctor, and he believes I have a muscle tear and should take time off. He also said, because the tear is severe enough, I may need to go on disability for a while.

The thing is, I don’t want to go on disability, and I certainly don’t want to raise headquarter’s insurance rates because I did so.

Now, something I should point out here, though these are all businesses conglomerated under one title, the branches are actually semi-independent. I have more information on this if anyone posts back and needs it. Each branch has its own insurance, for instance. What I want to do is demand Iowa’s branch pay for my disability, so they have to suffer the rate rise later.

I’m just not sure if I can do it. Technically, I’m an employee from California’s headquarters, but the accident did happen in Iowa. But then again, I saw a doctor in California. It’s quite a tricky business.

There’s a lawyer in Iowa I’ve considered calling, but again, if I can get the advice for free here, I’d much rather do that.

So, if anyone knows anything about this side of the insurance world, once again, get hold of me however you’d like, and we can discuss the issue in greater detail.

I really appreciate anyone who might be reading this and willing to get back to me.

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Possible Effects of Sleep Apnea if Untreated

Posted by on Jul 12, 2017 in Sleep Apnea | 0 comments

Sleep apnea, as defined by the National Institutes of Health, is a common disorder in which a person has one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while asleep. Though sleep apnea can cause a person to snore loudly, it is totally different from snoring. Snoring occurs when the airway becomes partially blocked. Sleep apnea, on the other hand, is when a person stops breathing (for several seconds to minutes). These pauses in breathing can occur 30 times or more an hour during a sleep cycle. The dangerous effect of this sleep-disrupting chronic condition is that it can completely block the flow of oxygen. However, since a blood test cannot diagnose the condition and the person who has it is not aware that he or she has it since it only occurs during sleep, sleep apnea is, therefore, often undiagnosed.

Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type of this sleeping disorder. This causes breathing pauses or shallow breathing and loud snoring. Though obstructive sleep apnea can affect anyone, this is more common in people who are overweight.

Another type of sleep apnea is central sleep apnea. This type is less common and, typically, does not cause snoring. In central sleep apnea, the area of the brain that controls breathing does not send the correct signals to the breathing muscles, resulting to brief periods of pauses in breathing. This type of sleep apnea is more common in people with certain medical conditions or use certain medicines.

If untreated, sleep apnea can result in a growing number of health problems including: high blood pressure, stroke, heart failing, irregular heartbeats, heart attacks, diabetes, depression, worsening of ADHD, and headaches. In addition, untreated sleep apnea may be responsible for poor performance in everyday activities, such as work and school, motor vehicle crashes, and academic underachievement in children and adolescents.

One form of sleep apnea treatment, which many patients choose, is through the use of oral breathing devices, such as nasal dilators, which a person should wear at night.

 

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The Most Common Defects on the Road

Posted by on Mar 22, 2017 in Common Road Defects | 0 comments

The Most Common Defects on the Road

Many traffic accidents occur because of the drivers’ fault, but there are some accidents where third parties become the triggers. Road defects are one of those third parties. What makes road defects so effective in causing accidents is the fact that they are almost always unexpected, and it will be too late for the involved driver to react.

If the driver can react on time, he may be lucky enough to avoid accidents. But if he cannot, he may be injured or even killed, which, of course, go with financial burdens such as medical costs, lost wages because of lost time at work, and funeral expenses. According to the website of this Fort Worth accident lawyer, those who have been hurt in defective road accidents may get compensation from responsible parties.

But sometimes, there is no monetary value for the pain and suffering these drivers have sustained. They should know the most common road defects as a safety measure.

Damaged or missing barriers

Barriers on the road and on the side of the road are there to properly divide the opposite lanes and prevent those who will veer off the road to crash down embankments. Inadequate barriers or the absence of them may result into head-on collisions, off-road crashes, and rollovers.

Damaged roads

Damage on the road itself, such as cracks and potholes, can be particularly dangerous for vehicles traveling at high speeds, because going through the defects may make them lose control and crash and going around them may make them collide with vehicles on the other lanes.

Defective traffic lights and stop signs

Traffic lights that do not work properly and stop signs that are not easily seen can cause right-of-way accidents, particularly T-bone collisions.

Poor landscaping

Large tree branches, overgrown bushes, dangerously abrupt turns, and unnecessary obstructions such as rocks, are just some of the landscaping issues that may cause visibility and reaction time problems.

Poor lighting

Another visibility issue is poor lighting. Sometimes, the vehicle’s lights are not entirely reliable, so complementing them with street lights is a good idea. The absence of street lights may cause vehicles to crash on unexpected obstructions, including crossing pedestrians.

Water, ice, and snow on pavement

Slippery substances such as rainwater, ice, and snow can effectively reduce the traction of tires on the road, making vehicles more vulnerable to crashing. It is best to drive slower when these conditions are on the road.

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Mechanical Defect in Truck Accidents

Posted by on Jan 5, 2017 in Truck Accidents | 0 comments

Being diligent on the road is a must, especially because a single mistake can trigger an accident that can cause injury or death. Since trucks can pose a more serious threat compared to other vehicles because of their size, truckers should be extra careful in driving.
A trucking accident can come in many forms. It can occur because of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, driver error, or negligence. These things can easily be avoided by truckers, but what if the accident occur because of something they can’t avoid, like mechanical defects?

Mechanical malfunction is one of the most common causes of trucking accidents. Most of the time, it is the manufacturer or seller of the defective part that becomes liable and not the trucking company itself. But the trucking company can still be held liable, especially if it is the one responsible for the maintenance of the mechanical parts.

Brake Malfunction

One of the most vital parts of a vehicle is the brake system. If the system fails, the truck driver will not be capable of doing an emergency stop to prevent an accident. It becomes even worse if the truck is going at a high rate of speed and the driver cannot even slow it down to at least lessen the impact. Brake defects occur because of component failure, condensation, poor air pressure, or overheating.

Tire Defects

Some of the most common truck tire accidents involve burnt treads, overheated tires, tire blowouts, and tread separations. All of these can be associated with defective tires and tires that are not well-maintained. The manufacturer or seller of the defective tires or the trucking company that fail to maintain the tires of their trucks can be held liable in such accidents.

Trailer Malfunction

An 18-wheeler truck’s trailer can weigh up to 12,000 pounds empty. You can just imagine how heavy it can get if you start adding cargo in it. The sheer size of trailers alone make it a devastating factor in an accident, so it is best to ensure that trailers are safe from defects. Common incidents concerning trailer accidents involve faulty support chains, jack knifing, trailer disconnection, and unsecure trailer ball locks.

It is scary to realize that deadly scenarios such as truck accidents can be triggered by the negligence of another party, like the manufacturer, seller, and trucking company. They are the very entities that we expect to prevent accidents, but the fact that trucking accidents are still common in the streets of the United States say that they are not trying hard enough.

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Everything You Need To Know About Fit-for-Duty Test

Posted by on Aug 9, 2016 in Workplace | 0 comments

In most instances, one of the major causes of workplace injuries is letting the wrong employee do a certain job. The employee tasked to perform a certain job is either physically not ready or totally unable to perform essential job functions. This is where a fit-for-duty test can come in handy. These tests can protect an employee from injury and you from paying workers’ compensation claim.

A fit-for-duty test can be administered as part of a functional employment testing. It may include the following examinations:

  • Return to work. This is administered if you are unsure that an employee who has been out for a while is ready to resume their work after an injury despite getting medical clearance.
  • Job Performance. You can give this test to an employee if you think that they cannot perform an essential function of the job or that they are not at par with the standards of other employees
  • Post-offer Physical Examination. Also called as physical abilities testing or pre-placement exams, it may include comprehensive questionnaires, musculoskeletal assessment, drug screen, and medical surveillance.

Fit-for-duty exams can also be interchanged with functional capacity evaluations (FCE). Administering such exams is a legal right of employers. While the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibit discrimination when hiring a disabled worker, the same disability cannot prevent them from doing an essential function of the job. A prospective employee who is in a wheelchair can be hired if he or she can perform say a desk job. The Americans with Disabilities Act sets two conditions for fit-for-duty tests:

  • Can the prospective employee perform the essential functions?
  • Does the worker have a medical condition that can directly threaten the safety and health of the worker or other employees?

These conditions can help decide whether a comebacking employee is indeed ready to work. The goal of fit-for-duty test is to check whether an employee can meet the physical demands of a position.
 

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