Some people probably think that slip and fall accidents are trivial and not likely to lead to a workers’ compensation claim. After all, everyone has fallen from time to time, and as the song goes, “you get right up, brush yourself off, and start all over again.” We know that falling from heights, such as off a roof, a ladder or scaffold can cause injuries. However, simply falling while walking seems far less serious.
Unfortunately, for many workers, that is not the case. A slip and fall at work can lead to severe consequences and leave one disabled and out of work. Such was the situation with an Illinois police officer. He was responding to an emergency call during December of 2009. Being winter, there was ice on the ground and he slipped and fell.
The fall caused a “spasm, shoulder sprain and hip bruise.” Does not sound too severe? Except an MRI would later reveal that he also had osteoarthritis in his hip. He was fortunate to be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits for that injury, which eventually forced the replacement of his hip.
He was unable to return to work and obtained a line-of-duty disability pension. All because of a seemingly “trivial” fall.
This is why anytime you suffer an injury at work you should never dismiss it as unimportant or not worth visiting a doctor to have it checked out. If you fail to document how the accident occurred as soon as possible, you could compromise your ability to receive workers’ compensation should it turn out to be more severe than you presumed.
Source: businessinsurance.com, “Slip and fall leads to disability pension, health insurance for police officer,” Stephanie Goldberg, September 25, 2015