Construction and Risk Of Occupational Disability

By Brad Myler
Brad Myler
Brad Myler
Through my 21 years of experience as a Disability Advocate, I have learned about a huge number of opportunities and benefits programs that exist to benefit the lives of individuals with disabilities.
November 21, 2014 Updated: April 23, 2016

The majority of industrialized nations around the world implement programs that provide protection for their workers in cases of disabilities. They understand how certain industries tend to be more prone to occupational disability risks compared to others. As a matter of fact, the increased awareness on this matter has led to more attention to disability pensioning, so nowadays, it is becoming more and more usual for countries to establish efficient disability pension systems that can be availed to workers, especially those that are employed to do heavy manual work, physically-demanding responsibilities, and other repetitive and hazardous tasks.

Over the years, various research, experiments, data gathering and studies have been conducted to learn more about the different aspects of disability risks and gather data on occupational disability among workers. A particular study conducted in Germany took 14, 474 males who worked in the construction field in Württemberg and went through occupational health examinations in a span of 6 years, from 1986 to 1992, to get the necessary information on disability rates, disability pension and other factors.

16% of the participants were found to have received disability pensions 10 years after the study. The most common causes of their disabilities were musculoskeletal and cardiovascular diseases, with 45% of them suffering from the former and 19% from the latter.

Also, compared to general workers, people in the construction industry were discovered to be at significantly higher risk of cancer, injuries, poisoning, respiratory problems, and musculoskeletal diseases.

It was also discovered that age is directly proportional to the level of occupational disability risks. As workers grow older, they become more prone to occupational risks and hazards.

The study also looked at data of foreign HVAC construction workers coming to work in Germany and compared these to local construction HVAC industry workers in the United States. It reported that these migrant workers were usually relatively healthier in comparison to the locals, so they were less likely to be in a position of occupational disability.

As conclusion to the study, musculoskeletal diseases as well as other external forces had major influence on the limitations and work capabilities of construction workers, and thereby resulted in a rise in occupational disability.

There are several other studies that focused on this same subject matter, and they came up with similar or comparable findings.
One such finding showed that blue collar workers were generally at greater risk of occupational disability than the white collar workers.
Another finding concluded that those who work in the construction industry longer, despite being a few years younger than the others, tended to end up being more susceptible to occupational disability risks.

What Is The Difference Between Occupational Disability Benefits And Total Disability Benefits? The Railroad Retirement Board offers two types of disability annuities. To learn more about the two, read the summary of each annuity type below.


Occupational Disability Annuity

• This can be availed by anyone who is not able to perform their regular work in the Railroad industry.

• If you take advantage of this type of annuity, there is a possibility for you to do other work.

• This type has a current connection with the Railroad.

• This is available for those who have served for 240 months in the Railroad, or are at least 60 years old and have enough creditable Railroad service, which is around 120 months.

• People who are “permanently disabled” and cannot fulfill their “regular railroad occupation” should check this out.

Total and Permanent Disability Annuity

• If you are not able to perform any type of job, then you should look into this.

• Those who want to avail of this can stop working and they do not have to have any connection with the Railroad.

• People who have 120 months of creditable Railroad service.

• Those who are “permanently disabled” to be qualified for any “regular work” should consider this type of annuity.

We advise that you talk to an attorney to help you better with this matter. Occupational disability is a delicate topic and it involves quite a number of factors that can be confusing or too complicated to understand. Therefore, seeking professional help is highly encouraged. A person like an attorney, who has the right knowledge on occupational disability matter, can provide advice on which annuity type is best for you and how you can be eligible for it. He or she can also guide you on the application process and tell you what documents and requirements are necessary to qualify.

Disabilities are threats to a long career. However, they always happen and the best you can do is to prepare yourself and know what to do to keep yourself afloat. Do not hesitate to get in touch with an attorney or anyone who is well-versed on occupational disabilities to help you with your problem.

Brad Myler
Through my 21 years of experience as a Disability Advocate, I have learned about a huge number of opportunities and benefits programs that exist to benefit the lives of individuals with disabilities.