Menu
Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Workplace Accidents

San Jose workplace accident attorneyWhen you have been injured at work, your thoughts may initially turn to filing for workers’ compensation benefits to cover the costs and damages associated with your injuries. Such a reaction is reasonable, as workers’ compensation is intended to offer coverage for a large majority of workplace accidents and injuries. There are, however, many situations in which workers’ compensation is either insufficient or inappropriate, and a separate lawsuit may be necessary.

Personal Injury and Third-Party Lawsuits

The best and most appropriate route for obtaining the compensation you deserve following a workplace injury depends on a number of factors. First, the cause of your injury is important. If you were injured in an accident that nobody else caused while in the normal scope of your job, a personal injury lawsuit will probably not be necessary.

...

Santa Clara County construction accident attorney, workplace accidents, serious fallsConstruction sites are hazardous environments. Regardless of personal protective equipment—joint pads, helmets, or slip-proof shoes—accidents occur on construction sites at an alarming rate.

Each year, the United States Department of Labor and the Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) work in conjunction to update the safety standards to prevent future incidents. However, each construction site has many employees in the vicinity at any given time, from those building the structure to approving permits, adding electricity, installing plumbing, and more. Each has a standard of care to which they must adhere. However, if any individual is negligent in these duties, workplace accidents may occur and cause severe injuries or even death.

Prevalence of Construction Site Accidents

...

electrocution injuries, San Jose, CA workplace injury attorneyElectricians and construction site workers are exposed to potential electrical injuries daily. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1,738 occupational fatalities were caused by contact with an electric current between 2003-2010. In fact, the construction industry had the highest number of electrical fatalities—849.

To avoid workplace accidents, the safety of these individuals rests on the shoulders of both electricians and contractors. When safety guidelines are not followed properly, all workers are put at risk for exposure to potential electrical injuries.

Injuries Caused by a Contact with an Electric Current

...

As California workers may know, dust accumulation in a workplace environment may lead to an explosion when not monitored and and controlled. In a 25-year period ending in 2005, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board reported 281 combustible dust incidents that resulted in injuries to 718 workers and the death of 119.

Safe-handling procedures are important to lower the risk in environments where dust accumulates in the air. Combustible dust may accumulate in a number of work environments, including plants that work with sugar, wood, plastics, coal and pesticides. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, in 2008, an explosion of sugar dust in a plant in Georgia resulted in the deaths of 14 individuals. Industries that may be subject to dust accumulation include metalworking operations, agriculture, pharmaceutical manufacture, and chemical manufacturing plants.

Control of hazardous conditions created by the accumulation of dust in the work environment may result in safer working conditions. With inspections and air testing conducted as a form of preventive maintenance, there may be less likelihood that adverse events might occur. According to OSHA, when combustible materials enter the air as dust and are suspended, an explosion may occur if the right conditions and concentration is reached. This includes materials such as iron that do not normally burn in larger pieces.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

Workplace accidents may not be the greatest public concern of California residents with regard to nursing care facilities, but worker safety and welfare is just as important as the well-being of the patients. OSHA announced its intention to more carefully monitor inpatient settings for worker safety concerns, especially in cases of facilities with high levels of reported accidents and employee illnesses related to work conditions.

Although health care injuries and illnesses might not seem as severe as issues like construction accidents, workers can face serious hazards in their handling of patients, medications and biomaterials. Moving patients can result in musculoskeletal injuries. Bloodborne pathogens, diseases such as tuberculosis, and germs like MRSA can also affect the health of workers. Workplace violence is a serious concern in these environments, while slips, trips and falls are common because of various activities in nursing homes. Hospital workers face similar hazards, which is why these areas are of particular concern to OSHA. A general duty provision addresses hazards that may not be clearly identified.

As OSHA intensifies its vigilance over inpatient facilities, it has also become more observant of similar issues in ambulatory health care facilities. The fines being assessed in some cases are more reflective of those normally levied against companies that have experienced fatality incidents. As this increased oversight plays out in the state and throughout the country, workers may find that employers become more receptive to complaints about safety violations.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

California residents may have read about a deadly accident at Nebraska Railcar Cleaning Services in Omaha on April 14. Two employees died and another was hurt in the incident.

A major explosion occurred inside a railcar after a 41-year-old employee and a 45-year-old employee went inside of it to begin their work, even though it was known that the air quality within the railcar was dangerously close to causing an explosion. Once inside the railcar, the two workers, who were not adequately equipped with emergency rescue gear and proper respirators, were instantly killed in the blast.

After the deadly blast, officials with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration conducted an investigation into each of the company's three locations. The company, which mainly cleans railcars that are used to haul items such as ethanol, gasoline, asphalt, pesticides and fertilizers, faces $963,000 in fines following those inspections. OSHA investigators reportedly found that the company failed to monitor and evaluate the air quality within the confined spaces of the railcars before and after employees entered them to do their work. They also discovered that the company failed to fit-test employees with respirators to keep them safe as they were inside the railcars. Among a list of other citations, OSHA officials stated that the company failed to implement safety training, committed electrical violations and failed to correct citations from 2013. The company was given 15 business days to respond to OSHA's penalties and citations.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has recently released its annual list of the deadliest jobs in California and around the country. Compiled from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, the list looked at the 4,679 fatal work injuries that were recorded in 2014. There were 4,585 fatal work injuries reported in 2013, which means there was a 2 percent increase in 2014.

Of the 4,679 work-related fatalities in 2014, 4,251 of the deaths were in the private sector. The civilian occupations that were the most deadly in 2014 included logging workers, fishers and aircraft pilots and flight engineers. There were 77 fatal work injuries for loggers, 22 for fishers and those doing related fishing work and 81 for the pilots and engineers.

Other occupations with high rates of fatal injuries were refuse and recyclable material collectors, agricultural managers like farmers, steel workers and truck drivers. Those who work with electrical power lines and supervisors of construction workers finished at the bottom of the list. The data from the 2014 CFOI also revealed that government workers had fewer fatal work injuries while workers 55 years of age and older had the highest amount of fatal work injuries ever reported. There were 1,047 on the job accidents that led to fatalities for self-employed workers, and men accounted for 92 percent of those fatally injured on the job.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

While OSHA says that workers must have fall safety equipment when working more than four feet in the air, employers don't always provide such protection. In fact, some employers consider it optional or don't buy equipment until after an accident happens. In some cases, employers aren't sure what type of equipment to buy, which is why they forgo it altogether even if they understand its value.

Therefore, it may be a good idea for employers to put together a safety team that can determine the best fall protection equipment for a given company. The team can do research and take other steps necessary to ensure that they balance worker safety with the cost of making such a purchase. Another option is to identify which application is most relevant for a given company and buy equipment for that application.

For instance, if the company's main application is unloading or reloading, equipment should be purchased to protect workers while performing those tasks. Buying the right fall protection gear can help to save lives and reduce workplace injuries. This can help prevent costs related to site shutdowns or medical bills for injured workers. Furthermore, companies that fail to abide by OSHA regulations expose themselves to steep fines for violating federal safety regulations.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

California residents may be following the story of a gas explosion that injured three people at a Bronx high school. Workers were installing a new science lab when the accident took place at about 8 p.m. on Aug. 20. The accident occurred when a worker used a lit match to see if gas was going through the line as designed.

There were seven workers from a construction company at the school at the time of the accident. Three of the workers had serious burn injuries, and all seven were taken to area hospitals. The explosion caused damage to the 4th, 5th and 6th floor of the school with the 6th floor suffering the most damage.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the school would not be able to open on time, but that all students would be placed at nearby schools. An area assemblyman said that no one was going to be allowed back into the building until it was safe to do so. It is believed that some rooms on the 7th floor of the school suffered structural damage in the wake of the explosion.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

Workers in manufacturing and other industries in California and throughout the United States will receive additional support in the prevention of certain types of serious workplace injuries. Specifically, the Occupational Safety Health Agency has recently issued an updated version of its National Emphasis Program directive on amputations.

OSHA's directive calls on employers to better identify and work to eliminate serious hazards in the workplace. The directive targets general industry workplaces where machinery is present that is likely to cause amputations. These industries include machine shops, bakeries, sawmills, meat processing plants and other manufacturers of food products. Data reported to the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate these industries have the highest rates of amputations among workers.

Data from 2013 reveals that 2,000 workers suffered an amputation that year, with the manufacturing sector experiencing a rate of amputations more than double that of all private industry. According to OSHA, this sector had an amputation rate of 1.7 per 10,000 full-time employees in 2013, whereas private industry overall had only 0.7 amputations per 10,000 employees.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

Although railroad companies are required to upgrade safety technology by the end of 2015, only three companies have filed formal plans to do so. The new technology upgrades are to involve positive train control, which is designed to automatically slow or stop trains when necessary via GPS as well as radio and computer software. Advocates hope that the technology can help prevent accidents due to trains traveling at unsafe speeds or into areas where crews may be working.

One such advocate is the National Transportation Safety Board, which has lobbied for such technology for more than 40 years. It believes that PTC would have prevented 145 crashes, which would have saved 300 lives and avoided 6,700 injuries. However, some railroad companies say that they have experienced unanticipated problems that have made it difficult to comply with the new rules.

Despite not being one of the companies that has submitted a plan for government approval, Amtrak says that it will have PTC available on its Northeast Corridor by Dec. 31. BNSF Railway, Metrolink and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority are the three railroads that have submitted plans. BNSF is the second-largest freight railroad in America while Metrolink and the PTA are commuter lines in Los Angles and Philadelphia, respectively.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

California workers may be interested in a series of mining industry fatalities that occurred in a single day across the country. These deaths have prompted one government agency to step up its enforcement and education activities in order to prevent further harm.

On Aug. 3, three mine workers in three different states were killed in workplace accidents. One work accident victim, an 18-year-old at a Virginia quarry, was buried beneath tons of stone and sand when a silo on the job site collapsed. The other incidents took place in South Dakota and Nevada. This is the first time that this many incidents have occurred on a single day since 2002.

The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration is increasing its enforcement of safety regulations in the wake of these three deaths. This will include more facility inspections, concentrating on particular violations that are commonly associated with mining fatalities. Additionally, the agency will put more effort into educating the industry on the dangers that these violations can present. This includes having inspectors on the ground and at the job sites, educating miners and site operators first-hand about the potential for serious and fatal accidents, along with how to prevent them. A spokesperson for the MSHA points out that these efforts will require cooperation industry-wide.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

Iron workers in California perform some of the nation's most dangerous jobs. While doing construction work on multi-story buildings, these professionals are at a great risk of falling. To protect them from workplace injuries and deaths, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration has fall protection standards that must be followed by employers.

OSHA standards for fall protection apply to all workers who perform tasks at least 15 feet above ground level. These workers must be protected with guardrails, safety nets, fall restraints, positioning devices and personal fall arrest systems. Despite these requirements, OSHA regularly cites construction employers for fall protection violations, and falls are among the leading causes of death and injury on construction sites. While employers are obligated to follow OSHA guidelines at a minimum, they are also advised to recognize hazards and develop their own policies for maintaining worker safety.

There are certain safety requirements for personal fall arrest systems that all employers must follow. A personal fall arrest system must not allow the worker to come into contact with a lower level after falling, and the worker must not be able to free fall more than 6 feet. Further, the personal fall arrest system must have the strength to withstand two times the potential impact energy that could be caused by the employee falling.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

Employees in California may benefit from learning more about the issues associated with emergency response, hazmat identification and control. One of the most critical tasks to complete in a catastrophic accident involving hazardous materials is to determine the chemical compounds involved in the incident. Addressing errors in the chain-of-custody process may be one of the most effective strategies for improving how these accidents are managed. Railcars, tankers, containers and trailers are all significantly affected by the integrity of the controls within the global supply chain.

Current technology can help enterprises deploy hazmat railcars, containers and trailers that are equipped with container security devices, or CSDs. Making these conveyances and containers smart with more recent tech applications can help provide more precise evidence about details concerning the contents or the shipping. The evidence is often accessible by using an app on a smartphone or another similar device.

Verifying the identity of the personnel, the qualities of the content being shipped and any corresponding item numbers may be essential for quickly gathering accurate information in the event of a hazmat emergency. The CSD activates the system for communicating pertinent data, and can automatically transfer the data to emergency personnel. Some of the vital data that is transferred to emergency medical personnel include isolation procedures, protective actions and the amount of distance recommended for staying safe in the event of an accident.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

Temporary labor continues to be prevalent throughout California and continues to rise nationwide. An assessment of workplace injury data performed by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration found that temporary employees suffer on-the-job accidents and injuries more often than those who are permanently employed.

Research published by ProPublica also supported this finding with figures that showed that temporary laborers faced injury rates twice as high as people in permanent positions. The research focused on severe injuries in which workers were crushed, broke bones or suffered punctures and lacerations.

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, roughly 17 million people in 2013 filled positions designated as temporary. Confusion about whether the contracting employer or staffing agency was responsible for safety and hazard training has been mentioned as one of the potential reasons for the higher rate of injury. As an industry, staffing agencies are beginning to seek best practices to reduce injury rates. For example, a regional manager for Kelly Services explained that said staffing companies should partner with client companies to determine safety training needs and perform quarterly assessments. Ongoing training about workplace hazards should also take place.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents

For many, fireworks are an integral aspect of celebrating Independence Day: nothing caps off a day of playing at the beach or backyard barbecuing like watching a spectacular fireworks show at night. However, fireworks can also be dangerous, and when not used properly, can cause injuries to people operating fireworks or even bystanders. This year, the state of California witnessed two devastating fireworks accidents, including one in Ojai, which left a worker seriously injured.

This past Independence Day, an incident at a professionally managed fireworks show in Ojai injured a pyrotechnics operator. The 32-year-old man suffered "extensive injuries," according to the Ventura County Fire Department, and remains in the hospital. No other injuries were reported. The malfunction occurred after the show began, when a pyrotechnic device went off prematurely. The Ventura County Fire Department and the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration are investigating the accident.

Accidents and injuries resulting from dealing with objects and tools that are dangerous in and of themselves, such as with fireworks, or electrical wiring, or power equipment accidents and injuries, can be devastating to workers and their families because recovery may require significant time away from work. When a tragic accident such as this one occurs on the job and a worker is injured, that worker may be able to turn to worker's compensation.

...
Tagged in: Workplace Accidents
AvvoAV10 Best Personal Injury American Justice SCCTLA CAOC

Contact Us Now

Schedule a Free Consultation

While this website provides general information, it does not constitute legal advice. The best way to get guidance on your specific legal issue is to contact a lawyer. To schedule a meeting with the attorney, please call at 408-293-7777 or complete the intake form below.

NOTE: Fields with a * indicate a required field.
*
*
*
John J. Garvey, III
10 Almaden Blvd, #1200
San Jose, CA 95113
Phone
408-293-7777
Fax
408-294-5890

Map and Directions