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Workplace accidents involving motor vehicles can be costly

Texas workers whose jobs include driving a motor vehicle or working near streets and highways may want to exercise more caution while on the job. Statistics show that more than one-third of the people who were killed while working died in accidents involving motor vehicles.

Across the United States, an average of 1,275 workers died each year between 2003 and 2010 in motor vehicle crashes on public roads, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Another 311 workers died every year in crashes that are at industrial locations or off the highway. Even workers who are pedestrians did not escape unscathed, as 336 workers died after being hit by motor vehicles. Professional drivers are not immune from workplace accidents either.

It costs businesses an average of $500,000 every time a worker is killed on the job and almost $74,000 if the worker is injured. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that employers have safety policies in place for workers who drive as part of their jobs. These policies could range from directives to obey traffic laws to risk management programs that include safety training and making sure vehicles are in good operating order.

Workers who are injured in motor vehicle accidents while on the job may be eligible for workers' compensation benefits. Survivors of workers who die on the job may be eligible for burial expenses and survivor benefits to replace the worker's income that supported their family. Injured workers may have their medical expenses paid by workers' compensation. If they missed work because of their injuries, they may also receive wage replacement benefits, as well as retraining if they are unable to return to their pre-injury job.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Motor Vehicle Safety", December 20, 2014

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