Fatality Injury Rates are Rising for Foreign-Born Laborers

Posted by robyn

Every year, preventable accidents injure or kill thousands of workers in the United States. The occupational fatality rate for foreign-born laborers has been the highest among all groups in the United States for 15 years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, even though foreign-born farm deaths decreased from 937 in 2016 to 774 in 2017, the fatal injury rate for foreign-born remain higher at 4.0 deaths per 100,000 workers.

Foreign-Born Laborers Injuries

Foreign-Born Laborers

Hired crop workers play a central role within the agricultural labor force in the United States. Hand labor places these workers at risk for occupational injuries during planting, growing and harvesting crops. Previous research shows that injuries range from machine entanglement, lacerations, and falls.

Underreported Injuries

Research shows workplace injury for foreign-born labors is underreported. According to the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), Hispanic workers are concentrated in small businesses and other work environments where job-related injuries tend to be underreported. This makes the full scope of the problem difficult to assess. Workers may be hesitant to report injuries or illness to their employers out of fear of losing their jobs. Plus, workers may not be able to afford time away from work. Employers may not track all injuries and illnesses to avoid inspection and compensation.

Foreign-Born Laborers Injury Claims

Work-related deaths affect Hispanic families especially hard. Many foreign-born laborers do not have access to life insurance. This leaves families vulnerable to making ends meet after the main worker of the family dies or sustains an injury. Furthermore, navigating injury claims with the state Department of Labor and Industries can be difficult for most people. However, the process is, even more, overwhelming for foreign-born laborers with language barriers. Additionally, many have little financial resources to ensure the Department of Labor or medical professionals adequately address their injuries.

Get Help with Your Injury Claim

Insufficient warnings can hurt or kill foreign-born laborers. When manufacturers fail to warn consumers about the dangers of operating the farm machinery that they design, the law may hold them responsible for worker injuries and/or deaths.

For example, some machinery requires entering climbing over operating gears that are likely to be activated by mistake. Other equipment might be relatively safe to operate in an open field but become dangerous when moved near overhead power lines. And some machines have components that continue to move for a period even after shut off.

Holding the manufacturers and sellers of defective farm equipment accountable not only helps the person injured, but also helps deter the manufacturer from continuing to use defective products. Many successful defective product lawsuits result in recalls of the defective product, which prevents injuries to others and dissuades the manufacturer from cutting corners in the future.

Defective farm equipment design could have caused your injury from a farming accident. That means: You are not at fault, and you deserve compensation!  Depending on the case, a variety of parties could be responsible for defective farm equipment injuries, which may also include companies that design, sell, lease, or furnish equipment to farmers.