Do Safety Measures at Work Really Help to Prevent Accidents?
Identifying hazards on the job and taking appropriate safety measures can help to reduce the likelihood of work-related accidents and injuries.
Work-related accidents and injuries can happen in any occupation. At the same time, there are certain jobs in which workers in Missouri are at increased risk. While employees are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits when job related injuries and occupational illnesses do occur, the ideal scenario would be to prevent them from happening in the first place. Taking the time to identify hazards and to implement the proper safety measures is an important first step in accomplishing this goal.
Workers at increased Risk for on-the-Job Injuries
According to statistics from the Missouri Department of Labor, more than 52,000 workers suffer from job related injuries or illnesses each year in our state. Occupations in which work related accidents are more likely to occur and the potential risks these employees face include:
- Heavy truck and tractor trailer drivers: Truck accidents are often caused by a lack of training, poor vehicle maintenance, and unreasonably demanding schedules.
- Laborers and freight or stock movers: Injuries can result from overuse, being caught in or between objects, and being struck by other equipment.
- Construction workers: Being struck by debris, slips and falls, or contact with live wiring are common on construction sites.
- Nursing assistants: Injuries can occur due to overuse and strain, needle sticks, facing assaults from patients or their family members, and being exposed to diseases, radiation, or other chemicals.
- Maintenance and repair workers: Muscle strains and back or neck problems are common among maintenance workers, as are electrocutions and serious lacerations.
- Manufacturing workers: These workers suffer increased risk for repetitive stress injuries, overuse, and being struck by or in between objects.
- Workers in the hospitality and service industries: Muscle strains or strains, slip and fall injuries, and serious cut or burns are common in these jobs.
- First responders: Police, EMS workers, and other first responders face risks due to acts of violence, injuries and chronic illnesses caused by stress or strain, and motor vehicle accidents.
Safety Measures Reduce Work Related Injuries and Illnesses
The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) reports that the root cause of many job related injuries is a failure to identify job hazards, and that taking the necessary safety measures can help to reduce the risks workers face. This includes:
- Hiring qualified candidates and providing ongoing job training;
- Providing personal safety equipment, such as hard hats, gloves, face masks, and other protective gear;
- Reducing exposure to potentially harmful substances and finding safe alternatives;
- Using machines and other equipment to eliminate the risk of overuse and strain;
- Providing proper floor surfaces and using safety supports, such as scaffolding, to avoid slips and falls;
- Making sure all tools and equipment are properly maintained.
Our Missouri Workers’ Compensation Attorneys are Here to Help You
When a lack of safety precautions leave you suffering serious injuries or illnesses, Morrison, Webster & Carlton, Attorneys At Law are here to help you get the compensation you need to recover. Call or contact our Missouri workers’ compensation attorneys online and request a consultation in our Springfield or Joplin office today.