Common Bus Driver Injuries
Whether they’re helping children get to school each day, helping people get to and from work, or helping people travel throughout the country, bus drivers play a very important role in society. But being a bus driver can be very challenging. Not just because of things like needing to interact with passengers or trying to operate a bus when the weather is bad. There’s also a very real risk of being injured on the job.
When a job requires driving a vehicle of any kind for a significant amount of time, the risk of traffic accidents are an inherent occupational hazard. Especially when those vehicles are large and need special care to safely maneuver, as is the case for buses. Even if the driver is well-rested, not distracted, and following all applicable traffic laws, there’s always the risk that another driver might not be as cautious. According to the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning, 15,798 traffic accidents involving buses and trucks occurred in the state of Michigan in 2019, 105 of which resulted in fatalities and 2,805 caused injuries.
There are many opportunities for bus drivers to fall on the job. For example, buses often have steep steps, which can be very easy to fall on. The floors and aisles of a bus can also get very slippery on rainy or snowy days when passengers are very likely to track snow or water in with them.
Overextension & Bodily Reaction
According to the US Department of Labor, overextension and bodily reaction injuries were the most common cause of workplace illnesses and injuries among bus drivers in 2012, accounting for 34% of all cases requiring time away from work that year. These types of injuries include injuries caused by things like repetitive movements, twisting, reaching, bending, lifting, pushing, or pulling. For bus drivers, these types of injuries can be caused by things like operating brakes or assisting elderly and disabled passengers as they get on and off of the bus.
Very often, bus drivers experience back pain as a result of their job. Musculoskeletal injuries are injuries or disorders which impact muscles, nerves, tendons, joints, spinal discs, and cartilage. Even when roads are smooth, buses still vibrate during operation and with all the time drivers spend on running buses, those vibrations can take a toll over time and potentially result in back pain among other musculoskeletal injuries.
Unfortunately, not all bus riders are well behaved. It’s not unheard of for bus drivers to be assaulted by passengers or be injured while dealing with an unruly passenger. There’s also the chance that they could be attacked by a dog brought onto the bus by a passenger.
Contact a Michigan Workplace Injury Lawyer
Even when a job comes with inherent risks, employers still have a responsibility to create a work environment that is as safe as reasonably possible. If you’ve been injured on the job, it’s important to get in touch with a workplace injury lawyer as soon as possible to make sure your claim for workers compensation benefits is handled correctly and that you get all of the benefits you’re entitled to. At Goodwin & Scieszka, you’ll be able to get help from a Michigan-based lawyer experienced in helping the victims of on-the-job injuries. Contact us today to get started.
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