According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 37,000 nail-gun related incidents occur nationwide each year. Almost one-third of those injuries occur on construction sites in Minnesota and across the country. One such event in another state recently sent a construction worker to the hospital.
A worker accidentally shot a nail into his leg and then attempted to pull it out with pliers. That process turned out to be excruciating, and he opted to wait for paramedics. He was rushed to a medical facility, where the nail was removed from his leg. The CDC says this was not a life-threatening incident, but instances of fatal nail gun accidents have been reported.
The health agency says the risk factors include double fire that results in unintended nail discharge, which can also be caused by accidentally knocking the safety button while at the same time squeezing the trigger. Nails can also penetrate right through the work piece, ricochet, or miss the work piece altogether. Accidents can also happen when nails must be shot into awkward places. Complacency can cause workers to bypass safety mechanisms, often with severe consequences.
When such incidents occur in Minnesota, the state-regulated workers’ compensation program might provide financial assistance to cover medical expenses and lost wages. An injured construction worker must report the injury to his or her employer as soon as possible and then file a benefits claim. This is where the skills of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney come in. Legal counsel can assist with the claims procedures in pursuit of maximum benefits under applicable state laws.