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Understanding OSHA Construction Safety Guidelines

November 1, 2012 | Uncategorized

The Occupational Safety & Health Administration is a branch of the U.S. Department of Labor. Created by the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, it aims to ensure safe working environments for all U.S. workers through nationwide regulations and standards. Though OSHA works to protect and ensure the safety of workers in all industries, it offers many guidelines specific to the construction sector, given its high-risk, hazardous environment. OSHA construction safety regulations cover everything from inspections and permits to training and first aid.

 

San Antonio injury lawyer Pat Maloney shares some of OSHA’s requirements for employers in the construction industry:

 

  • Employers must regularly complete inspections of construction sites, materials, and equipment.
  • Tools or machinery determined to be unsafe during inspections must be tagged or locked to prevent use.
  • Only workers who have the proper training or experience to operate tools, equipment, and machinery may be permitted to do so.
  • Employers must provide workers with protective equipment in order to prevent injury.
  • Employers must provide proper training and safety programs per each employee’s duties.
  • Workers should be instructed on how to recognize and avoid hazardous situations.
  • First aid and medical provisions must be provided in case of injury.
  • There must be a fire protection and prevention program in place.
  • Employers must ensure work areas are free of debris, scraps, and other hazards.
  • Work sites must have waste containers.
  • Work areas must be properly lit when construction is in progress.

 

There are also OSHA construction safety guidelines for specific tools, site signage, electrical work, welding, masonry, scaffolding, demolition, and more. OSHA also has regulations for fall protection, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics notes is the biggest threat to construction employees, accounting for 34 percent of all on-the-job construction worker deaths in 2010.

 

Were you or someone you know the victim of a construction site accident because OSHA regulations were not followed? Contact San Antonio personal injury lawyer Pat Maloney today.

 

Reporting Unsafe Conditions

 

If you or someone you love spots an unsafe or hazardous condition while working at a construction site, it’s important to notify someone immediately. Tell a supervisor and, if necessary, go to a union representative or file an official complaint with OSHA. An OSHA complaint will result in a site inspection in which an OSHA representative will visit the work site, examine the conditions, and interview workers. If the representative finds an employer has failed to comply by OSHA regulations, it could result in a steep fine.

 

Under the OSH Act, employers are prohibited from discriminating against a worker who takes action to enforce OSHA safety regulation (such as filing a complaint). They are prohibited from firing, demoting, or transferring an employee, so there is no need to fear for your livelihood when reporting an unsafe work condition.

 

What Next

 

If you or someone you love falls victim to a construction site accident because an employer failed to follow OSHA construction safety regulations, you may have grounds for a personal injury claim and compensation for your injuries. Contact Pat Maloney now to see what you may be owed for your case.

 

A personal injury claim may award you funds for:

 

  • Current medical bills and treatment costs for the injury
  • Expected future medical bills
  • Lost income and wages, if the injury has kept the victim away from work
  • Lost earning capacity, if the injury has rendered the victim unable to continue working
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost quality of life, if the injury has severely affect the victim’s enjoyment of life

 

Call 210-226-8888 to discuss your case with a San Antonio injury lawyer at the Law Offices of Pat Maloney today.