Teens Claude Ryan and James Casey started UPS in 1907 with a borrowed $100, initially delivering parcels on foot or by bicycle. They slowly expanded their now worldwide enterprise, and by 1953, the company began overnight air deliveries.
Currently, UPS has approximately 534,000 employees who provide delivery services in more than 220 countries, delivering more than 25 million parcels daily.
Common UPS hazards and work injuries
UPS employees perform a wide variety of jobs within the organization. Individuals handle envelopes and packages of different sizes and weights. Prior to being loaded onto trucks and planes, hand trucks, pallet jacks and forklifts are used for sorting and loading. Lifting and carrying items by hand is also common.
With so many different job responsibilities, it’s not surprising that UPS employees are susceptible to a number of job-related injuries. They include:
- Slip, trip and fall injuries. Icy or wet surfaces create slippery hazards that can cause employees to slip, trip or fall and suffer different injuries, including broken bones and head, brain and back injuries. Additionally, in warehouses and at airports, employees might fall off a ladder or trailer while loading or unloading packages.
- Crush injuries. Workers may suffer crush injuries when large cargo loads shift or overturn during transport.
- Injuries from vehicle accidents. Vehicle accidents occur secondary to blown tires, slippery roads or distracted drivers, which may lead to driver injury.
- Overexertion injuries. Delivery workers may become injured from chronic heavy lifting and carrying.
- Burn injuries. Packages containing hazardous chemicals may rupture, leading to burns or explosions and the potential for a variety of injuries.
- Hearing injuries. Warehouse workers are subject to excessive noise levels that eventually affect hearing.
- Respiratory injuries. Chronic exposure to vehicle exhaust fumes and other chemicals and toxins can lead to respiratory disorders.
- Injuries from excessive fatigue. During holiday seasons, employees commonly work long hours, which can lead to fatigue and a higher potential for injury.
Common injuries for UPS package handlers
Any UPS employee who lifts, carries or otherwise manually handles packages may suffer different types of injuries that include:
- Cervical or lumbar sprains or strains
- Herniated disks
- Rotator cuff tears or other shoulder injuries
- Knee ligament tears or other knee injuries
Common injuries for UPS drivers
UPS drivers may become involved in motor vehicle collisions when traveling from one destination to another to receive or deliver loads. Drivers operating trucks of various sizes involved in an accident may suffer:
- Broken or crushed bones
- Finger or limb amputations
- Lacerations requiring medical intervention
- Whiplash or other neck injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries that may include memory loss or permanent disability
- Anxiety and depression from lost wages secondary to recovery time or disability
What to do after a work injury at UPS
After sustaining a work-related injury, UPS employees must perform a series of steps:
- The 1st thing you should do after an accident while working at UPS is seek medical attention. If your injury isn’t an emergency, make an appointment with a healthcare provider. This is an important step toward getting workers’ comp benefits because it will provide documentation that links your injury to your work accident.Some facilities require that employees seek care from an approved medical center or physician. If this is the case, a local facility manager or supervisor should provide you with a list of approved physicians.
- After receiving emergency medical care, you must report the event to your manager or supervisor within 1 month of the event date. Workers’ compensation will dismiss your claim if you fail to report the accident within a timely manner.
- You must follow and continue the treatment regimen prescribed by your attending physician. If, for some reason, you don’t agree with a healthcare provider’s instructions, you may consult a different physician for a 2nd opinion, but that physician should also be on the list of employer-approved physicians.
- In most instances, UPS pays the expenses incurred by injured employees. However, should a worker not receive the benefits to which they’re entitled, it may be necessary to consult with an attorney.
What workers’ comp benefits are injured UPS workers entitled to?
When Alabama workers’ compensation approves a claim filed by an injured UPS employee, they may receive the following workers’ comp benefits:
- Payment for medical treatments. Payment includes reimbursement for prescription medications, surgical corrections, doctor appointments, mileage to and from appointments, physical therapy and any needed equipment.
- Disability payments. Injured employees are also entitled to receive temporary partial disability payments, temporary total disability payments, permanent partial disability payments or permanent total disability payments as part of lost wages.Payments might also compensate for reduced wages should the worker be restricted to light-duty or reduced work hours. Permanent partial disability payments may include limb loss, reduced body part function, burn injuries or disfiguring scars.
- Vocational rehab. Should the injury prevent a worker from returning to their previous occupation, workers’ compensation pays for vocational rehabilitation expenses. Rehabilitation payments may include returning to school.
Consult an Alabama attorney familiar with workers’ compensation cases
Workers’ compensation commonly provides injured workers with the benefits to which they’re entitled. But if your claim is refused, consult an Alabama attorney experienced with workers’ compensation cases to ensure your rights are protected. Your attorney can review the evidence surrounding your case and present the circumstances at a hearing so you can get the compensation you deserve.
If you’ve been injured while working at UPS in Alabama, contact the experienced workers’ compensation attorneys at Nomberg Law Firm. We can negotiate with UPS and their insurance company on your behalf so you can focus on recovering from your injury. Contact us today, and let us devise an individualized plan for you.
About Nomberg Law Firm
Nomberg Law Firm has been helping people in Alabama recover fair compensation for their injuries since 1967. We know our clients are hard-working men and women who deserve the best representation possible.
We understand how hard it can be to pay your bills and get back on your feet while trying to recover from a serious injury. That’s why we dedicate our entire practice to fighting for your rights and obtaining maximum financial compensation.
The sheer number of clients at larger law firms means you’re one of many. As a small, family-owned injury law firm, we can focus on your needs, provide individualized assistance, and offer you one-on-one attention that larger firms simply cannot match.
Get the legal support you need to recover and move forward with your life.