This month has brought tough winter conditions to many areas across the United States, including here in New York. While many New Yorkers are choosing to stay home to avoid the ice, snow and cold, some people do not have that luxury. New York government employees, for example, including police officers and firefighters are still necessary to keep the rest of the state safe – especially in inclement weather.

However, many of these first responders are used to dangerous working conditions. They often put their lives on the lines to keep other people in New York safe. As a result, these workers are often injured while at work.

Recently, 10 New York firefighters were injured while trying to stop a blaze at a house. Apparently a fire started at a three-story residence somewhere around 2:00 a.m. In order to stop the flames, more than 140 firefighters responded to the incident. The 10 injured firefighters suffered from minor smoke inhalation and other minor injuries and had to be treated at the scene.

Workplace accidents like this are common in many different occupations involving government workers. When government workers are injured in an accident, they should make sure they understand their legal rights. In many cases, workers’ compensation may be available to these workers. This compensation can help provide financial support to the injured workers as they recover. This compensation can include money for lost wages, medical bills and other expenses.

However, this money may not be automatic. Government workers need to be prepared to fight to get the compensation they need. If an initial workers’ compensation claim is denied, workers should know they may have the right to appeal.

Source: New York Daily News, “10 FDNY firefighters suffer minor injuries battling Bronx blaze,” Joe Stepansky, Jan. 3, 2014