The Occupational Health and Safety Administration, or OSHA, has examined the danger posed to essential workers from COVID-19 and has proposed a number of safety guidelines that can help companies keep their employees safe. Unfortunately, some companies are not doing enough to prevent the spread of the virus among their workers. If you or a family member contracted COVID-19 at the workplace, contact an experienced Arkansas attorney for COVID-19 work injuries caused by OSHA violations.
Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, recognizes the uncertainty many essential workers are experiencing during the coronavirus pandemic, and we are here to offer you the legal representation you deserve. Our firm can help you pursue compensation against a negligent employer that failed to correct unsafe work conditions that caused the spread of COVID-19. To schedule a free case evaluation to discuss your potential lawsuit, contact Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, at (479) 316-0438. You may also contact the firm online.
Work Injuries Caused by Coronavirus in Arkansas
In the United States, the COVID-19 pandemic has reached a total of nearly 850,000 confirmed cases. Out of this number, there are over 76,000 confirmed recoveries and nearly 48,000 deaths due to the virus. In Arkansas, there are over 2,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and about 43 confirmed deaths. However, it is important to note that these numbers may be inaccurate as many COVID-19 were scarce when the pandemic began to spread.
While Arkansas has not been under a strict stay-at-home order like many other states, the risk of contracting the virus is still present for many essential workers. If employers do not implement procedures to decrease the risk of spreading the virus, they could be held liable when a worker tests positive for it.
COVID-19 is caused by a strain of coronavirus known as SARS-CoV-2. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the coronavirus is often spread when an infected individual coughs or sneezes produces respiratory droplets. These droplets can travel up to six feet or more and land in the mouth, nose, or eyes of other individuals in the vicinity, causing them to contract the virus.
There are a number of signs and symptoms that can indicate that a person has contracted COVID-19. For example, if a worker complains of a fever and chills, this could be a sign they contracted coronavirus. There are other signs and symptoms of coronavirus:
- Body aches
- Dry cough
- Loss of taste or smell
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- Nasal congestion
This is not an exhaustive list. There are a number of other more severe symptoms of COVID-19 that are still being discovered. It has also been reported that COVID-19 poses a higher risk to individuals with pre-existing conditions. This means the virus can further weaken a person’s immune system and cause other serious health conditions. For example, a patient could develop severe pneumonia that will require intubation.
To learn more about liability for COVID-19 work injuries, you should continue reading and speak with an experienced Arkansas Workers’ Compensation attorney as soon as possible.
OSHA Reporting Requirements for Arkansas Employers
OSHA has deemed that the coronavirus is a “recordable illness” that requires employers to report when a worker tests positive for the virus. Specifically, an employer must report coronavirus cases under the following circumstances:
- An employer has evidence of a confirmed case of COVID-19 as defined by the CDC
- The circumstances of the coronavirus infection are work-related
It is important to note that OSHA requires certain industries like healthcare and law enforcement to report when a case of coronavirus occurs. However, other industries are only required to report when the following occurs:
- An employer finds objective evidence that a COVID-19 case was work-related
- An employer had reasonable access to information that would indicate a worker contracted COVID-19
If you were exposed to the coronavirus due to the negligence of an employer, you should consider seeking compensation for your injuries. A COVID-19 diagnosis can result in expensive medical bills, loss of wages, or even the frightening prospect of passing away due to health complications related to the virus.
Our firm can help you explore your legal options for recovering compensation from an employer. For example, if you are sure that you contracted coronavirus at your workplace, you may be eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits as the injury would be considered work-related.
Alternatively, if you may also seek a personal injury lawsuit against your employer if you believe they acted negligently in regard to protecting workers from the transmission of the virus. Depending on the circumstances of your case, we can help you determine the appropriate legal steps to take if you or a family member contracted COVID-19 in the workplace.
Contact Our Experienced Arkansas Coronavirus OSHA Violation Lawyer Today
If you or a family member was exposed to COVID-19 at the workplace and tested positive for the virus, you should consult with an experienced Arkansas coronavirus work injury lawyer as soon as possible. Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, possesses over 20 years of legal experience, and he is ready to use his legal knowledge to help you seek the compensation that you deserve. To schedule a free legal consultation to discuss your claim, contact Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, at (479) 316-0438.