According to a survey released in November of last year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that were over 2.8 million nonfatal workplace injuries in 2018. The good news is that this number is the same as in 2017, and the annual number of workplace injuries has been in decline over the last several years. However, 2.8 million is still a lot of injuries. More importantly, the total number of injuries doesn’t matter if you’re the one who is injured and unable to work.
Why OSHA Standards Are Important
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is charged with promulgating laws and regulations designed to keep our workforce safe. Unfortunately, many employers put their workers at risk by failing to keep up with OSHA standards or intentionally choosing to put profits over their employee’s safety. While OSHA standards cannot prevent every accident, the protections and training that they mandate are important. Failing to comply with OSHA standards can often lead to an accident and serious injury.
An employee who is injured on the job can file a workers’ compensation claim or can pursue a personal injury claim alleging that their employer was negligent. If you are injured on the job, the first thing you should do is discuss your options with an experienced workplace injury attorney. If you decided to pursue a negligence claim, you will need to prove that your employer was negligent. Evidence that your employer routinely failed to comply with OSHA regulations can help prove your claim that their negligence led to your injury.
Common OSHA Violations
If you’ve been injured while on the job, you may be surprised to learn that your employer was not in compliance with OSHA regulations. The following are some common OSHA violations that can lead to serious injury:
- Regulations Protecting Against Falls. Employers can violate OSHA regulations by failing to install guardrails, provide safety harnesses, or take other measures to guard against falls. OSHA also mandates that employers provide sufficient training to employees in order to help them avoid fall hazards.
- Warnings Concerning Known Hazards. OSHA regulations require that employers that use or distribute hazardous chemicals or other materials and substances provide workers with adequate and understandable information concerning the nature of and hazards associated with the chemicals. Employers are also required to provide education and training to the employees to ensure that the chemicals are handled safely.
- The Use of Respirators or Other Breathing Protection. OSHA regulations include standards for respiratory protection and mandates specific requirements for when respirators must be used.
- Burns and Electrocutions. OSHA has detailed regulations regarding the use and installation of electricity. There are also regulations addressing possible burns and other injuries.
- Use of Forklifts and Other Heavy Equipment. Employers can violate OSHA standards by failing to ensure that employees are adequately trained and using forklifts in a safe manner. Heavy equipment is also required to have certain safety features, such as the “OSHA beeper” that warns workers that a work vehicle is moving in reverse.
An experienced workplace accident attorney can evaluate your case and identify potential OSHA violations. In turn, these violations can then be used as evidence of your employer’s negligence.
Contact the Atlanta Workplace Attorneys at Slappey & Sadd
The best thing you can do if you have suffered an injury at work is to discuss your case with an experienced workplace injury lawyer. From workers’ compensation claims to whistleblower lawsuits, we can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call us at 888-474-9616 to visit us online to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you.