New Yorkers who have become disabled may be interested in the findings of the 2016 Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index. It found that overexertion was the leading cause of disabling injuries among workers. According to Liberty Mutual, the finding did not come as a surprise. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that musculoskeletal disorders made up 32 percent of all 2014 injury and illness cases.

The majority of MSD cases in 2014 occurred among laborers, nursing assistants and freight, stock and material movers. The 2013 data published in the Liberty Mutual Index was developed in cooperation with Liberty Mutual, the National Academy of Social Insurance and the BLS. Overexertion injuries account for nearly one quarter of the nation’s overall injury burden and cost employers $15.08 billion.

Same-level falls came in at second place with significantly lower direct costs of $10.17 billion. Falls to a lower level came in third with 8.7 percent of the overall burden and costs of $5.4 billion. The top five causes of injury made up 64.7 percent of the overall cost burden. The five leftover injury causes accounted for only 17.7 percent of companies’ losses due to disabling injuries. These injuries included accidents involving motor vehicles, slipping and tripping without a fall, becoming caught in equipment, being struck against equipment or other items and repetitive motions.

Injured employees may seek coverage for medical bills and associated costs through a workers’ compensation settlement. If negligence was a factor and a settlement could not be reached, a personal injury lawyer may possibly help injured victims file a lawsuit in order to seek compensation for lost wages.