Grimes & Fertitta, P.C.

Preventing workplace accidents

Employers have the responsibility to take precautions against workplace injuries. Slipping, tripping and falling caused over 25% of all workplace injuries, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Many of these were caused by ladders, roofs and scaffolding.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 20% of falls on the same level involved tripping, 13% of falls on the same levels involved slips and 11% of falls to a lower level took place when a worker fell through an opening or surface.

There are also many other causes of these injuries. 35% of injuries in all industries involved sprains, strains and tearing. 15% of all nonfatal injuries came from equipment or objects striking workers.

Employers should review their businesses for areas or objects that increase the odds of a worker slipping, tripping or falling, even if there are no ladders, scaffoldings or similar items. These risks include spills, surfaces that are slippery, obstacles, inoperable equipment and lack of warning or safety signs.

Employers should install adequate lighting to ensure that workers can see possible risks and avoid them. Signs should be placed in potentially dangerous areas and other hazards, such as obstructions, spills and toxins, should be identified.

Proper ventilation is needed to prevent workers from inhaling toxic chemicals or other unsafe particles. Hard hats, slip-enforcement footwear and other attire must be required to prevent accidents.

Workplace accidents may be grounds for a lawsuit, especially if an employer did not take reasonable precautions to avoid the accidents. An attorney can help employees seek compensation for their injuries in a civil lawsuit.

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