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Workplace injury accidents and OSHA's common violations

Now that the holidays are over, many in Worcester have probably already headed back to work. This time of year, with long stretches in between holidays, many employees in the local area may be putting in extra hours in order to pay off holiday debt or save-up for time off in the spring and summer. With Americans working so hard, it may be just the right time for workers to be reminded of the importance of safety on the job and the value of workers' compensation claims.

Across all industries, workplace injury accidents can have negative effects on employees, business operations and morale in the workplace. Thus, it is beneficial for employers to thoroughly train their workers on all safety-related points relating to their jobs. Many incidents of falls, broken bones, burns and even fatalities could have been avoided if the proper steps had been taken by the right individuals.

What were some of the most common workplace accident types in 2015? According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, fiscal year 2015 saw the most OSHA standards violations in the area of fall protection, specifically in the construction industry. Coming in second were violations of hazard communications, followed by construction scaffolding. The fourth most common type of violation was respiratory protection; after that was hazardous energy control.

The top ten most commonly-violated OSHA standards last year also included industrial trucks, construction ladders, electrical problems and machinery. While the most devastating type of workplace accident - that which produces a fatality - is statistically down from 1970, there were still over 4,600 deaths on the job in 2014. Often these deaths, as well as the accidents which produce more minor injuries, are preventable.

Regardless of the type of violation, an OSHA inspection can reveal key facts about a workplace accident. These facts can be critical to an injured worker's claim or to a grieving family in need of benefits. A Worcester workers' comp attorney can help a worker hurt in many types of on-the-job incidents.

Source: OSHA.gov, "Commonly Used Statistics," accessed Jan. 6, 2015

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