“Every day in this country, more than 14 workers lose their lives in preventable workplace tragedies—close to 100 deaths every week,” David Michaels, OSHA Assistant Secretary, recently said. He went on to say, “even further from the headlines and public consciousness is the fact that 4.6 million workers suffer from serious occupational injuries each year.” The sad truth is that the majority of these workplace injuries were preventable.
These tragic, workplace injuries unfortunately point to a pattern of employer neglect that shouldn’t be tolerated. We at Seeger Weiss believe that no human life and suffering should ever be reconciled as the cost of doing business or the cost of making a profit. Our firm stands up for the victims of workplace injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured, fill out this form today for a free consultation.
Although employers cannot control roadway conditions, they can and are legally responsible to ensure safe manufacturing, handling and transport practices by their employees. See industrial accidents in the production and transfer of Ammonia.
OSHA Tries for Tougher Penalties
OSHA and other regulatory bodies are pushing for stricter enforcement and higher fines for employers who knowingly put employees at risk. Revisions to the Protecting America’s Workers Act is now under consideration in Congress and would raise the ceiling on OSHA fines, increase criminal penalties and liability for employers and expand the rights of workers’ and victims’ families. Here’s other work taking place to reduce workplace injuries especially on the roadway:
Use of Employer Administrative Databases: The Department of Health Policy and Management and the Center for Injury Research and Policy have successfully used employer administrative databases to identify systemic injuries in aluminum manufacturing.
Ten-Year Washington Truck Driver Study: The occupation of a truck driver is recognized as one of the most hazardous occupations. A study, the Washington Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (WA FACE) Program, tracked patterns and trends of truck driver fatalities in Washington State for ten years (1998–2007). Hazards were identified and preventions suggested.
Use of Technology to Improve Driver Behavior: The use of telematics in fleet management has been tested as a method to mitigate risky driving behavior by giving managers real-time data and statistics on employee driving behavior. The adoption of such technology has significantly proved to reduce workplace injuries.
Team versus Solo Driving Strategies for Commercial Truck Drivers: A case-study revealed that the presence of passengers had a protective effect on older adult male truck drivers making them drive more safely. The results will help influence current thinking on the advantages of team truck drivers in commercial trucking operations.
Global Collaboration to Improve Worker Safety on Roads: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and stakeholders in the United States and abroad are working together within the new National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA). The effort is using a sector-based approach, which includes all employers, all workers, and all workplaces. NIOSH and its partners have formed eight Sector Research Councils, whose participants come from academia, industry, labor, and government and will offer practical measures to prevent workplace injuries.