In many situations, employers try to make their workplaces as safe as possible for employees. While accidents can still happen, the risk is reduced since the employer has complete control over the environment.
However, in some New York careers, the workers do not just sit a controlled building or office — they are traveling, they are on the roads or they are on location. In these situations, the employer has less control over the safety of the workers which can increase the chance for a workplace accident. Even in situations like these, employees are still entitled to workers’ compensation if they are injured in an accident.
In a recent New York case, a sanitation worker was hit while on route. This case is a good example of a worker who is likely still covered by workers’ compensation despite the fact that he doesn’t just work in one specific location. According to reports, the 45-year-old sanitation worker was collecting garbage along a street. As his truck was pulled over, the man waved some on-coming traffic around his truck.
One of the drivers — a 33-year-old man — drove around the truck but did not leave enough room for the worker. Therefore, the worker was hit by the man’s car. Because of the collision, the worker suffered injuries to his back, head and knee. The worker was transported to a local hospital but his condition is not known.
Since this worker appears to have been performing his duties at the time of the accident, he is likely entitled to workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation is extended to employees who are performing their duties whether or not they happen to be in the employer’s office or not. Generally, as long as the injury occurred to an employee and as a result of that person’s employment, the costs relating to the injury should be covered.
Source: Waste & Recycling News, “On the Streets: N.Y. worker struck while directing traffic,” May 14, 2013