Every year, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration releases a list of the top safety violations in Connecticut and around the country. At the top of the list for 2018 was fall protections which mostly relate to the construction industry. Employers need to make sure that there are protections in place whether an employee is using a small ladder to reach something on a shelf or is working on a roof. Guard rails, toeboards, floor holes, and other features are standard.
Heat-related illnesses cause more than 1,300 workers' deaths every year in Connecticut and across the U.S., according to the EPA. Heat, not just from the sun but also from machinery and from layers of personal protective equipment, is something that every employer must address whether the employees work indoors or outdoors. Below are some tips.
The loading of docks, whether they are exterior or enclosed, is the center of action in any warehouse or distribution center. Due to the constant loading and unloading and the presence of forklifts and other equipment, these areas raise several safety concerns that employers in Connecticut would do well to not ignore. By following the tips below, they may be able to reduce the number of loading dock accidents and injuries.
As many Connecticut workers know, mining is a difficult and dangerous job. In addition to its inherent dangers, the profession presents additional factors that only add to the risk, including long, strenuous workdays and inexperience. A University of Illinois at Chicago study that looked at approximately 546,000 injury reports that were filed between 1983 and 2015 showed just how dangerous the profession could be due to these factors.
Workers in Connecticut may know that April 22 to 29, 2019, was Workers' Memorial Week. During that week, the AFL-CIO released a report on workplace injuries, fatalities and illnesses, saying that companies need to be more aware of the hazards faced every day by workers. The National Safety Council, recognizing the same dangers, has even asked Americans to go online and take its Safe at Work Pledge.
Construction workers in Connecticut have a dangerous job. That's why federal agencies including the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration devote significant resources to preventing construction site accidents. However, falls, many of which are preventable, remain a thorny problem for federal safety agencies and construction companies. In fact, falls are the leading cause of on-the-job construction worker deaths.
Miners in Connecticut have many inherent hazards associated with their chosen profession. According to a University of Illinois at Chicago study, irregular schedules could also increase the risk of sustaining injuries for miners. Researchers discovered that hurt miners who worked shifts lasting for nine hours or more tended to have either irregular work schedules or fewer than two years of on-the-job experience.
Many Connecticut residents spend a good portion of their time at work. Unfortunately, each year, around 700,000 Americans experience an eye injury that impairs their vision in the workplace. Since so much time is spent in the workplace, it is imperative that emphasis is put on eye safety.
For business owners in Connecticut who wish to reduce safety risks in the workplace, the most important thing is to create a work culture that is more risk-minded than safety-minded. Many employers, unfortunately, believe that employees will be safe as long as they follow established procedures. Employees, for their part, often think of safety as the responsibility of the company and are not told to be proactive in recognizing and communicating risk.
Workers on farms in Connecticut may be at risk of serious workplace injuries and accidents. Farm work often involves large, complex machinery that can pose a significant risk of an acute injury. However, other types of injuries can develop over time due to repetitive exposure to certain types of physical stress. According to a study funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, many operators of farm machinery experienced vibrations that reached a limit set by the European Union for exposure in only two hours of operation. This is particularly concerning for workers operating these vehicles daily.