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California worker gets injured in workplace accident

An employee at a California clothing donation facility suffered an arm injury after getting into an accident involving a conveyor belt. Firefighters and paramedics took the man to the hospital for further care after working to stop the machine and get his arm free. The man had gotten his arm caught in the machine, which the facility uses to sort clothing.

The man suffered major damage to his arm due the accident. Rescue crews could not determine whether his arm would need to be amputated as a result of the major injuries sustained. The accident is an example of an uncommon workplace accident. Details of the cause of the accident have not been determined, but the California Department of Industrial Relations Division of Occupational Safety and Health holds responsibility for looking into the case. The determinations made by the agency often play a role in whether people injured in workplace accidents receive workers' compensation.

Before California employees can file injury claims to receive compensation for workplace injuries, they need to let their employers know about their injuries and seek appropriate medical care. Their employers need to give or mail them claim forms following their injuries, which workers fill out and return to them. Employers then send in the claim forms to their insurance companies. Claims administrators let employees know within 90-day periods if they will receive workers' compensation benefits.

A worker who has sustained an on-the-job injury needs to make sure that they knows their rights and goes through all of the steps necessary in order to file an injury claim. When individuals believe they have been treated unfairly and should receive compensation for medical treatment or lost wages, they can take workers' compensation cases to an attorney experienced in these cases.

Source: State of California Department of Industrial Relations, "I Was Injured At Work," 2013.

Source: Pasadena Star-News, "Worker gets arm caught in conveyor belt at Pasadena Salvation Army", Brian Day, May 22, 2013

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