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Berlin New Jersey Legal Blog

3 steps to take after a slip-and-fall accident

With motor vehicle accidents such a high risk for anyone who drives, you likely are prepared with knowing what to do after a collision. But do you know what you should do after a slip-and-fall accident? Falls are the top reason for a visit to the ER, shares the National Floor Safety Institute.

Before you get anxious about another thing to worry about, know that the steps to take are similar to the ones following an auto accident but even fewer.

Beryllium standard enforcement pushed back to May

New Jersey employers may know that OSHA's new beryllium standard will not take effect until May 11. The reason for the delay is that negotiations are still occurring to settle lawsuits related to the rule. For those in the shipyard and construction industries, enforcement of the .2 micrograms per cubic meter of air per eight hours standard will not be enforced until May. The same is true with the 2 microgram limit per 15-minute sample period.

Beryllium is typically used to make electronics, and too much exposure to the material can lead to chronic beryllium disease and lung cancer. According to OSHA, roughly 62,000 workers are exposed to it each year. The new standards are expected to prevent 90 deaths per year from beryllium-related disease. Companies that are not in compliance with the new standards may receive a notice from OSHA as well as an offer to help get into compliance.

Soft tissue damage can bring pain after car crashes

Drivers in New Jersey who have been victims of a car crash may experience lingering pain and ongoing problems due to the soft tissue injuries that frequently accompany motor vehicle accidents. This type of injury is distinguished from a hard tissue injury because rather than affecting bone or cartilage, these affect softer body parts like ligaments, tendons and muscles. There are a number of signs and symptoms that can point to soft tissue damage after an auto accident, including sprains, tears and other pains and injuries.

The power of a car accident's impact can jolt the people inside the vehicle, forcing their bodies to move quickly in different directions. Even protective responses to a crash such as sharply applying the brakes or entering a brace position can intensify damage to soft tissue. The impact of a car crash can damage the soft tissue and force it to stretch. One of the most common types of soft tissue injuries suffered in a car accident is whiplash, a neck injury. This most frequently occurs in rear-end accidents when a car is hit from behind. The accident victim's head swiftly moves back and forth, putting pressure on the neck that can later manifest as chronic pain.

Risks increase when you forgo a doctor visit after an accident

With some types of injuries, you know immediately you need serious medical care. However, many other kinds of injuries may have severe long-term consequences without necessarily resulting in immediate symptoms.

Seeing a doctor as soon as possible after a car accident - even if you think it was minor - can help you get the right treatment when you need it. A prompt checkup can also help you get an accurate diagnosis in time so you can file your claim before the statute of limitations runs out.

NGA report gives tools to streamline road safety improvements

State governors have a key role in the improvement of road safety conditions, according to a report from the National Governors Association. In fact, the report not only points out what governors could do but also gives concrete recommendations and strategies. It's something that should interest drivers, law enforcement, and anyone else in New Jersey who is concerned about the safety of America's roads.

Safety conditions in the U.S. are lacking compared to those of other developed nations. Even worse, the number of traffic fatalities has been rising over the past few years. In 2016, for example, there were 37,461 traffic deaths, representing a 5.6 percent increase from 2015. A total of 39 states saw an increase in traffic deaths in 2016.

An auto accident can give you lasting nerve damage

If you are a typical New Jersey resident who makes daily drives to work, on errands, taking the kids to school and all the other trips you make, you know that New Jersey roads and streets can be dangerous places, especially in the winter. Vehicle crashes happen all too frequently. What you may not know, however, is that if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in one of these accidents, you could suffer lasting nerve damage.

Your body contains three types of nerves. Motor nerves control your voluntary movements. Sensory nerves control your five senses and also your ability to feel pain. Autonomic nerves control your involuntary functions, such as breathing, pumping blood, digesting food and regulating your internal temperature. Obviously your nervous system is extremely important, and the over 100 types of nerve damage you could sustain to your head, neck, shoulders, limbs, chest, abdomen and back in a vehicle crash could permanently change your life.

Staying safe in a building

New Jersey residents generally don't walk into a building expecting to get hurt. However, there are a number of dangers that may be present once inside. For instance, it may be possible to slip on a wet floor or run into something because there wasn't enough light to see. Injuries may also be the result of a falling object or because a premises had insufficient or negligent security.

When determining who may be liable for an injury, it is important to know if a person was allowed to be on the property or not. Generally speaking, the owner of a property has a higher duty of care to an invitee or a licensee as opposed to a trespasser. However, property owners generally have a duty of care to take reasonable steps to prevent dangerous conditions from being present.

Survey reveals lack of workplace safety preparedness

The software company Rave Mobile Safety recently published a "Workplace Safety and Preparedness" survey involving 530 employees of different ages and in various backgrounds. Both employees and employers in New Jersey may be interested that the results reveal several issues, some due to the growing generation gap.

One issue was lack of preparedness in the face of new dangers. While 87 percent of the respondents said that their workplace has a fire drill policy and has even put it into practice, only 57 percent said that their company has drills in case of hazardous materials incidents and active shooter incidents.

Cold stress a major hazard for outdoor workers

As cold environments lower skin and internal temperatures, they make a person more susceptible to a condition known as cold stress. Cold stress occurs when the body can no longer produce heat to counteract the heat loss, and it leads to serious injuries and even death. Outdoor workers in New Jersey will want to know more about this.

There are three main types of cold stress: hypothermia, frostbite, and trench foot. When the body's temperatures drops to 95 degrees Fahrenheit and below, hypothermia sets in, and the body is no longer able to heat itself. Initial symptoms range from numbness to slurred speech to shallow breathing, and the condition could lead to loss of consciousness and even death.

New guidelines could make EMS work safer

New Jersey residents generally understand that it can be dangerous to work when tired. This is why the National Association of State EMS Officials and the University of Pittsburgh are teaming up to lower EMS worker fatigue. Research into the matter found that more than 50 percent of EMS workers get less than six hours of sleep per day. It was also discovered that these workers feel fatigued at work and have trouble recovering between shifts.

Among the recommendations made were to provide caffeine to workers while on the job. It was also suggested that they be given the chance to nap during their shifts and that their shifts be less than 24 hours long. When workers are tired, it may be difficult to make proper decisions as it relates to patient care. Driving an ambulance may also be more difficult for those who are tired while behind the wheel.