For centuries, work in the agriculture industry has remained one of the most dangerous jobs in the nation. Workers can hurt themselves in countless ways with large machinery, animals, and a wide variety of chemicals.
Unfortunately, regardless of the size of the US farm, many injuries, even fatal injuries, happen annually.
Were you or a family member injured while working on a farm? If so, you are likely entitled to file for the workers’ compensation you deserve.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC
Contact the personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, for more information and a free review of your legal rights and options. An experienced Illinois farm accident lawyer can help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Farm Injury Statistics: A Discouraging Perspective on Worker Safety
According to the Centers for Disease Control , farming is a high-risk business and one of the most dangerous occupations, with many severe injuries and fatalities. Recent statistics reveal that over 400 farmers and agricultural workers die annually from agricultural work-related injuries at a fatality rate of 19.2 deaths per 100,000 farmers.
In 2016, there were 1.8 million full-time workers and over 5 million combined workers in the agricultural industry. Unfortunately, 476 farm workers lost their lives that year in work-related accidents.
In addition, over 240 farmers and farmworkers are harmed every day, with 5% of these injuries resulting in permanent impairment.
Farm-Related Injuries Among Children and Adults
The following statistics on farm-related injuries are alarming:
- Over one million children under 20 years live on farms, with over half working on the farm.
- In 2009, approximately 230,000 adolescents worked on farms owned and operated by others. Unfortunately, an average of 113 children under 20 die yearly on farms.
- In 2015, 16,100 child and adolescent accident victims were harmed on farms, and 3,400 were related to work accidents.
- Older farmworkers are at high risk of fatalities in workplace accidents.
- The Fatal Occupational Injury data census  shows that farmworkers over 55 were victims of over 50% of agricultural work-related deaths between 1992 and 2004.
- Tractor rollovers remain a leading cause of death, accounting for 90 deaths annually on farms.
- Many of these could have been prevented by following warning labels, taking extra caution, and using roll-over protective structures. In 2010, only 59% of tractors were equipped with these devices.
- According to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), farmworker injuries were 20% higher in 2010 than in other types of work accidents (4.8 per 100 versus 3.8 per 100 for workers in all other industries).
Common Causes of Farm Accidents
Tractor accidents remain the leading cause of serious injury and fatalities. Additionally, farmers and many farm workers are often severely injured by defective farm equipment and hazardous work conditions, including:
- Malfunctioning or defective farm equipment
- Chemical exposure in grain elevators
- Tractor accidents while pulling equipment
- Grain auger accidents
- Tractor rollovers
- Toxic chemical exposure
- Pesticide exposure
- Animal farm-related accident
- Silo suffocation
- Fires and explosions
- Tractor/car accidents
- Hay baler accidents
- Machinery and truck accident rollovers
- Power take-off injury & entanglement
- Equipment defects
- Combine grain bin and other equipment accidents
Faulty Farm Equipment
Some tractor accidents can be due to improper training or incorrect safety gear. It is up to farm owners to provide a safe and healthy work environment, just like any other employer. However, many of these farm injuries also happen to the farm owners and their families due to no fault of their own.
Malfunctioning or defective farming equipment and machinery have put agricultural workers and farm-owning families at risk for serious injury sustained in their workplace. Some chemicals and pesticides could be inherently dangerous if proper warning information is not included on the packaging or the farmworker doesn’t take appropriate precautions.
Ensuring Farm Workers’ Safety
Unfortunately, with these types of accidents, the manufacturers of agricultural farm equipment and products are often at fault for the farm accident injuries of many farm workers. Our office is actively prosecuting cases involving pesticide exposure with Alzheimer’s from Paraquat and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma from Roundup exposure.
When farm workers suffer a farming accident, the following should be attended to:
- Immediately seek medical attention for any injuries. Any third-party claims can be nullified if injured workers did not seek medical attention at all or did not do so timely.
- Report the accident as soon as possible.
- Write down the details surrounding the incident.
- Recall and document any witnesses such as fellow employees or independent contractors, and all instructions from supervisors.
- Speak to a lawyer before meeting with any insurance companies
It is a dangerous industry where agricultural workers must strive to use safety precautions when working with dangerous farm equipment to prevent farm accident injuries. The farm owners also must provide the proper safety equipment and training for their workers.
As a general rule, farm employees are covered under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act if they are injured on the job in Illinois. However, in Texas, most employers are not required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Independent contractors may not qualify for workers comp benefits.
Workers Compensation Benefits
The Act is not fault-based and automatically provides the following workers’ compensation benefits to injured workers:
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses reimbursement for past and future medical care
- Funds for property damage
- Lump-sum payment based on the extent of your injury
- Vocational training if you are incapable of returning to your pre-injury position
Our farm accident experienced attorney will file a workers’ compensation claim or a third-party claim on behalf of the injured party. Claiming workers’ compensation benefits is done on a contingency fee basis, where we only receive payment once we successfully obtain compensation for a client.
Farm Accident Lawyer
Contact a farm accident attorney today for a free consultation to discuss receiving fair compensation for your medical bills, time away from work, and pain-and-suffering.
The farm accident lawyers at our law firm will also seek additional defendants, businesses, and independent contractors (third parties) who might be at fault for causing your damages in personal injury cases. Our attorneys will ensure you receive compensation paid by the defendant’s insurance company.
An Illinois Farm Accident Attorney Representing Workers Suffering a Farm Injury
Many agricultural injuries involve powerful machinery; catastrophic accidents can be life-changing events for the individuals involved. Frequently, these work-related injuries are magnified due to delayed medical attention or inadequate care in rural areas.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC understands the issues involved in these Illinois farm accident litigation and workplace injuries and endeavors to secure maximum recovery from all responsible parties through farm accident claims.
Like all farm accidents and work-related injuries, farm workers are entitled to receive Illinois Workers’ Compensation benefits to recoup their medical bills paid through their employer’s insurance company coverage. A Workers’ Compensation claim will cover medical expenses, time away from work, pain, and suffering.
Call our Chicago, IL, personal injury law firm for a free consultation at (888) 424-5757 to discuss any questions related to your legal rights.
Speak to an experienced farm accident lawyer who has handled matters involving people who have sustained severe injuries while working on a farm.
Farm Accident Injury Settlement Examples
Our Illinois farming accident lawyers secured a $2,100,000 settlement for a 45-year-old man who fell from the roof of a grain silo in Bloomington, IL. The fall resulted in multiple compression fractures to the man’s lower back that necessitated a lumbar fusion.
In this example, after we were retained, we hired an investigator to inspect the silo and farm accident scene. The investigation revealed that the silo was improperly constructed and was missing vital structural bracing that caused the roof to give way when in operation.
Soon after fact-witnesses were deposed, a farm accident lawyer from our law firm worked to settle the case using a mediator and the defendant’s insurance company.
Farm Accident Lawyer FAQs
Our personal injury attorneys understand that many families have unanswered questions about personal injury claims after farm workers die or are severely injured. Many farm accident victims know how to deal directly with insurance companies to receive compensation for damages.
Our law office has answered some of those questions below. Call our farming accident attorneys at (888) 424-5757 for additional information or to schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal options to file a personal injury claim.
What types of farm accidents can occur?
Farm accidents can include:
- Slips and falls
- Falling from heights
- Transportation accidents, including tractor-related collisions
- Entanglement in machinery or equipment without safety guards
- Rollover crashes when rollover protective structures are not installed
- Hazardous exposure to toxic chemicals
- Suffocation in grain bins
- Trampled injuries and fatalities involving farm animals
What are some of the most common injuries sustained from a farm accident?
Farmers work with hazardous materials and in dangerous environments, putting them at risk of injury. The job’s physical demands can take a toll on the body; long days spent bending over or lifting heavy objects can lead to chronic pain in the back or muscles.
Common farming injuries include:
Are there any laws that protect workers from farm accidents and injuries?
Various federal laws in the United States protect the health and safety of farmers and farmhands. The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) sets standards for healthful and safe working conditions, including:
- Work hours
- Medical care
- Retirement benefits
It also prohibits employers from discriminating against employees who try to enforce their rights under the law.
Who is responsible for compensating injured farmworkers for damages, injuries, or fatalities?
Generally, employers are responsible for compensating injured farmworkers for damages, injuries, or fatalities that occur while on the job under the legal concept of “workers’ compensation.”
Workers’ compensation is insurance that provides financial benefits to an employee who suffers a work-related injury or illness. The benefits include medical care, disability payments, and other financial assistance while they are unable to work.
Sometimes, an employer may be held liable for injuries due to negligence or recklessness. In such cases, injured workers can pursue a personal injury claim against the employer, which could result in additional compensation for medical expenses and pain and suffering.
Can injured farm workers file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation if employers fail to take safety measures that led to injuries?
Yes, injured farm workers can file an accident injury lawsuit to recover compensation after suffering an injury due to an employer’s failure to take safety measures.
Generally, employers are expected to maintain and provide a safe working environment and follow state or federal farmwork safety guidelines.
If the employer fails in this duty, they may be held liable for any resulting injuries. In such cases, the injured worker may seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Contact a Farmworkers Compensation Lawyer for Legal Representation
In Illinois farm accident injury cases, a farm accident lawyer on our legal team will commonly investigate the role of landowners, equipment manufacturers, management companies, maintenance companies, and others working on the farm– all intending to protect our client’s rights in the farming industry.
Have you suffered a workplace accident trauma, or were you involved in a work-related injury or lost a loved one through wrongful death? At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, we can assist you in receiving the compensation you deserve through the legal process.
Contact an experienced farm accident lawyer today at our law firm at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) for help and to schedule a free consultation.