Many workplace accidents nationwide, including in Colorado, are avoidable and occur because employers fail to take the necessary precautions to protect workers against safety hazards at their places of work. However, now and again, a worker suffers a workplace injury that could not have been anticipated. Such incidents sometimes happen in times of extreme weather conditions, as was the case when a worker in another state recently lost his life.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says hundreds of employees nationwide suffer on-the-job injuries each year, including workers in Colorado. The agency contends that the primary cause of occupational injuries is employers who disregard safety regulations. This remark followed an investigation OSHA carried out after a woman suffered a life-changing workplace injury at a manufacturing plant in another state.
Workers nationwide, including in Colorado, are at a significant risk of suffering heat-related illnesses during the summer months. Despite the multiple warnings issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, many employers fail to provide adequate heat protection for their workers. The girlfriend of an oilfield worker and his two young sons now have to adjust to life without their father. He died recently after he contracted an illness caused by heat exhaustion while re-working an oil well in another state.
Severe weather, accompanied by lightning, can pose a great danger to Colorado workers who remain exposed rather than ordered by employers to take cover. When dangerous construction projects are undertaken, employers must devise contingency plans for all eventualities, including rules on what to do when exposed to lightning. To avoid construction injuries due to lightning strikes, workers must move clear from scaffolding, rooftops, trees, ladders and equipment that could conduct electricity. They must take cover and avoid being out in the open.
Electrocution hazards exist on most work sites in Colorado and in other states, and identifying potential electrical hazards is a vital part of site inspections prior to commencing work. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires company owners to undertake proper evaluation inspections and address potential hazards. Workers must be made aware of dangerous areas to prevent incidents of electric shock and other occupational injuries.