Compensation for Baggage Handlers
Baggage Handlers Compensation Claims
Baggage handlers must handle luggage in many locations throughout the airport, including the terminal, the tarmac, or on the plane. The luggage and other goods being transported are often heavy, and workers are under constant pressure to move the baggage to its proper location quickly.
Common baggage handlers’ accidents and injuries include:
Baggage handlers must carry, lift, and load heavy luggage and other baggage that may be oversized or unevenly loaded. In addition, they are required to push and pull carts and cargo bins and position loaders. These workers can suffer overexertion injuries due to carrying items too heavy for them, sometimes on a constant basis.
Many of the movements involved in moving baggage are repetitive and can lead to repetitive stress injuries like carpel tunnel syndrome.
When loading and unloading baggage in the cargo bin, workers often must work in cramped conditions or twist their bodies in awkward positions, sometimes multiple times in a day.
If luggage or other items are over head or stacked high, they can fall onto a worker, causing him to suffer serious head injuries, fractures, and more.
Baggage handlers can suffer serious injuries in a slip and fall accident if the tarmac becomes slippery due to rain, spills, debris, and other hazards in their work areas are not removed.
Vehicle and heavy equipment accidents
Baggage handlers must work around vehicles, baggage transport vehicles, and other heavy machinery on the tarmac and in the airport. These workers can suffer life-altering injuries or death if the vehicle or machine driver fails to see them and hits them.
Caught in machinery
Employees who work around the belt loaders and other machinery can have their clothes, hair, or body parts trapped in the machinery, which may result in a body part being amputated or permanently injured.
Shift work disorder
When workers work the night shift, rotating shifts, or excessive hours, they could suffer with shift work disorder, a condition that can cause insomnia, depression, and an inability to concentrate.
Baggage handlers must work around loud airplane engines, bag handling equipment, and other loud equipment that can result in them being exposed to excessive noise.
Common injuries that baggage handlers suffer
Baggage handlers can suffer many injuries that require them to take time off work to recover from their injuries. Some injuries, such as those caused by overexertion and repetitive movements, can be made worse if the injured employee continues to work. Some of the injuries that can lead to a workers’ compensation claim include:
- Musculoskeletal disorders that affect the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the shoulders, back, neck, and arms
- Head injuries, such as a fractured skull or traumatic brain injury
- Fractures and broken bones
- Hearing loss
- Spinal injuries
- Internal organ damage
- Heat stroke, heat exhaustion, and other heat-related illnesses
I’ve been injured working as a baggage handler. What should I do?
If you’ve been injured at work your employer should take care of submitting a workers compensation claim on your behalf, but you’ll need to get a certificate of capacity from your doctor and you’ll need to get it renewed every 28 days. This is used to determine your weekly payment amount, unless the insurer makes a work capacity decision that’s different from your doctor’s opinion.
If you’re unsure what to do, it costs nothing to call one of Firths specialist workers' compensation lawyers and receive the expert advice that can make all the difference to how much compensation you receive.
Superannuation & TPD Claims
If you received a more serious injury or illness from working as a baggage handler and are now unable to work permanently, then in addition to a workers’ compensation claim you might be entitled to make a TPD claim as part of your superannuation.