Are you at risk for an on-the-job assault?

Workplace assaults are far more common than many people probably believe. People sometimes react to their frustrations or disappointments by lashing out in anger at the closest person available.

How likely is that to be you? Your odds of being injured by a customer or co-worker may be directly tied to the type of work that you do. Data from the United States Department of Labor indicates that the following factors increase your chances of suffering violence at work:

  • You handle a great deal of money or cash exchanges with the public, which may leave you vulnerable to robbery.
  • Your work requires you to interact with highly unstable people (such as drug addicts or alcoholics).
  • You work alone or in an isolated area where someone may be less inhibited about attacking you.
  • You provide personal services or care for others, which means that you may be working with people who are hurt, upset or confused.
  • You work where alcohol is served.
  • You work in a location that is dangerous or work late at night.
  • You're a delivery driver or you drive passengers for a living.
  • You guard valuable property.

Some workers, including medical professionals and first responders, realize that they're always in danger of a physical assault. However, others may have a false sense of security -- until they're the victim of an irate customer or co-worker.

As long as you didn't instigate the violence, you may be eligible to claim workers' compensation benefits after an on-the-job assault. If you've been injured, find out more about your options for financial compensation and medical benefits through workers' comp.

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