The eye is a very vulnerable and sensitive part of the body. Here is a selection of decisions from the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission that involve injuries to workers’ eyes:
2014; Cook County; 09 I.W.C.C. 034494:
A young man was at the center of this accident. He was a 21-year-old construction worker helping to set up a work site when a wheelbarrow tire exploded. Shrapnel from that explosion flew into his right eye and injured him badly. He was immediately rushed to the emergency room for care where they got the situation under control. However, even after this treatment, he still suffered from headaches and light sensitivity. He was able to return to work but with moderate difficulties. After hearing his case, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission awarded him the following benefits:
- $300 per week for 16.2 weeks for permanent partial disability benefits. This represented a 10% loss of function to his right eye.
2008; McLean County; 06 I.W.C.C. 12253:
The worker involved in this accident was a 53-year-old man. He was an assembly worker at Mitsubishi. One day, while working on the line, he felt some of the byproduct of the machines he was putting together land in his right eye. It was at this moment that he began to feel significant pain. He sought medical care and doctors determined that he had retinal detachment in the affected eye and performed surgery to correct the injury. Despite a successful operation, the employee still found that he had difficulty directly seeing out of the right eye, lacked much peripheral vision with it, and had a hard time making out shapes or depths. He brought a claim before the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and they gave him the following benefits:
- $799.47 per week for 11-1/7 weeks for temporary total disability benefits.
- $534.16 per week for 75 weeks for permanent partial disability benefits. This represented a 50% loss of function to his right eye.
- All past and future necessary medical expenses.
2013; Winnebago County; 06 I.W.C.C. 16229:
This dispute initiated with the injury of a 45-year-old mason worker. He was hammering stakes into the ground when a shard flew off and went into his eye. This injury occurred despite the fact that he was wearing protective glasses. Doctors examined him and found that he had a perforating left eye injury. They chose a course of treatment including surgery but that were unsuccessful and the eye was lost. He had to have a prosthetic surgically implanted into the orbit of his left eye. Naturally, he filed a claim with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission for these disabilities and the future losses he would suffer because of them. The Commission gave him the following benefits:
- 60% of the man’s average weekly wage ($916.81) for 160 weeks for permanent partial disability benefits due to the complete loss of use of his left eye.
- $1018.67 per week for 35-2/7 weeks for temporary total disability benefits.
- $4,573.58 for medical, transportation, and other expenses.
2007; Kane County; 01 I.W.C.C. 56564:
Here, a 65-year-old mechanic walked face-first into a metal drawer and sustained injuries to his head, eyes, and nose. He complained that, even after medical treatment, his right eye was not 100% and he had problems with dizziness, focus, headaches, balance, and vertigo. He stated that he could return to work following these injuries but not in the same condition or at the same speed. He filed a claim with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and they awarded him the following benefits and expenses: