Dear Blue Collar,
The other day a worker made himself a cup of instant coffee. He put a cup of water in the lunchroom microwave, nuked it for a couple minutes, took it out, dropped in the coffee powder, and the whole thing exploded like somebody slipped dynamite into the Nescafe jar. The worker was scalded and will be on modified duties for a time. Is this a WCB claim?
Answer: Like the answer to every good question, it depends. Because the injury required medical attention (I’m assuming) and the disability will extend beyond the date of accident, this is probably a claim — that is, if the incident was work related.
When did the incident occur? During a break or lunch hour? Who did the cup belong to — the worker or employer? The details matter. For example, if the worker was on lunch and filled his own cup, then WCB is likely to reject the claim. On the other hand, if the mug was company property, the incident is surely reportable. If you haven’t already done so, interview the worker to clarify the circumstances.