Tow Truck Drivers and Mental Stress
September 26, 2018
Tow truck drivers have one of the most dangerous jobs in the country. Over one million truck drivers will be involved in a serious crash at some point in their career, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). They face not only physical hazards of the job but also work-related financial and mental stress.
Tow truck drivers hook up heavy machinery and vehicles to trucks daily, putting them at risk for many physical injuries including:
- Back and neck injuries
- Musculoskeletal injuries
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Strains and sprains
Tow truck drivers may also be seriously or fatally injured outside of their vehicle. Drivers typically load vehicles onto the tow truck on the side of the road, where they are at risk of being hit by oncoming traffic. Another hazard of the job is workplace assault – irate car owners may become violent with tow truck drivers as their vehicles are being prepared to be towed away.
Local law enforcement often calls the closest tow truck company to haul away wrecked vehicles from the scene of accidents. Unfortunately, tow truck drivers are not always compensated for their efforts; only full comprehensive insurance will pay for towing expenses.
Basic liability insurance only covers payouts to victims injured in an accident caused by their customers and does not compensate for towing. Therefore, drivers with liability packages often abandon their old or damaged cars, leaving tow truck companies to bear the expense of towing it away.
One towing company owner says he has not been paid for towing approximately 30 vehicles over the past four years. He believes that drivers who cause accidents should be required by the state to pay for the towing of their vehicle before they register another one.
Tow truck drivers are often called to the scene of horrific accidents. However, unlike fire fighters, police officers and other first responders, they do not have access to formal mental or emotional support systems.
In Pennsylvania, workers who experience mental stress due to their working conditions may be able to collect workers’ compensation benefits. However, psychological and emotional injuries are often difficult to prove – generally, workers must be able to show that their impairment was caused by abnormal working conditions. However, if a worker suffers mental stress as a result of a physical injury sustained at work (for example, if they suffer a debilitating injury that leads to depression), their claim may be easier to establish.
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Attorneys at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Help Workers Obtain Compensation for Job-Related Psychological Stress
If you are suffering from a work-related mental injury, contact a skilled Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. We can help determine whether you are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits and ensure that your claim is handled appropriately. For a free consultation, call us today at 888-PITT-LAW or complete our online contact form.
We represent injured workers in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County and throughout Pennsylvania, including those in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester and Wynnewood.