THE WCI WEEKLY
Week of July 31 - August 4, 2017             
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Welcome to your weekly WCI Newsletter. We have selected the top stories that appeared on our website this week to help you stay up to date on what is happening in the world of workers' compensation and insurance. Enjoy.

First Annual WCI Blood Drive !

One Blood will be on-site with their big red bus for those who wish to donate blood and receive a free Zika test. 

Make an appointment Monday or Tuesday for a chance to win a prize. However, you may donate onsite without an appointment. 

Check it Out: WCI's Annual Conference Comes to Town

By Dara Barney

It is that time of year again: The Workers' Compensation Institute's (WCI) Annual Conference starts Sunday, Aug. 6 and goes through Wednesday, Aug. 9 at the Marriott World Center Resort & Convention Center. There are many different tracks and topics to choose from, and  WorkersCompensation.com has taken the time to cover a few of the sessions, with some input from speakers.  Read more.
Workers' Comp Fraud Busts

By Phil Yacuboski

A nationwide crackdown on individuals who didn't meet the standards when it came to insurance licensing requirements in eight states netted 675 arrests.   

The raid, organized by the National Association of State Contractors Licensing Agencies (NASCLA), attempted to level the playing field for contractors, protect consumers and discourage illegal activity in the construction industry. 

"The shared commitment of our state members brought awareness to unlicensed activity and spotlighted the contractor state licensing and registration boards nationally," said Angie Whitaker, NASCLA executive director, in a statement to  WorkersCompensation.com

The raid highlighted the issues with workers' compensation fraud in Arizona, California, Florida, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah and Washington. Read more. 
Coal Ash Spill Survivors File Suit, Say They Were Threatened into not Filing for Workers' Comp

By Liz Carey

Eight years after the dust has settled, surviving cleanup workers of the largest coal ash spill in history are filing suit against the company that failed to warn them of the dangers of coal ash, or to allow them workers' compensation for illnesses they came down with after only a few months on the job.

In December 2008, a massive coal ash spill created havoc for the Tennessee Valley Authority. The spill, which dumped more than 5 million cubic tons of sludge into the Emory River, closed roads, seeped into nearby neighborhoods and closed river ways. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) declared the area a superfund site, saying it was full of toxic chemicals.

According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, the employees who cleaned up the spill were denied access to masks, given only a bucket of water to decontaminate themselves with and were also threatened with layoffs if they filed workers' comp claims for illnesses they developed while on the job. Read more.
Top 10 California Workers' Comp Topics: First Half of 2017

By Julius Young

Months race by, so now it is time to take stock of California workers' comp after the 2017 half-way mark. What stands out?

Below, in no particular order, are my picks for the most significant topics in California workers' comp during the first half of 2017. Most of these were discussed in my blog as the year went along. Read more.
National Safety Council: 43% of Americans Admit They May Be Too Tired To Function Safely At Work

By WorkersCompensation.com

According to a new National Safety Council survey-based report, 43 percent of Americans say they do not get enough sleep to mitigate critical risks that can jeopardize safety at work and on the roads, including the ability to think clearly, make informed decisions and be productive. Eighty-one percent of  the probability-based survey respondents have jobs that are at high risk for fatigue - positions that require sustained attention or are physically or cognitively demanding, such as driving a vehicle or working at a construction site, according to the report, Fatigue in the Workplace: Causes & Consequences of Employee Fatigue.

The  survey found 97 percent of Americans say they have at least one of the leading nine risk factors for fatigue, which include working at night or in the early morning, working long shifts without regular breaks, working more than 50 hours each week and enduring long commutes. Seventy-six percent of Americans say they feel tired at work, 53 percent feel less productive, and 44 percent have trouble focusing. Fatigued employees are more likely to make safety critical errors that could lead to injury, such as crashing their vehicle. Read more. 
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  WORKERS' COMPENSATION INSTITUTE
P.O. Box 200, Tallahassee, FL 32302

Newsletter Editor editor@wci360.com
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