Michael Burgis & Associates, P.C.

Stand-down aims to limit workplace injuries and deaths from falls

The construction industry holds a week of stand-down action nationwide -- including in California -- at this time every year. Between May 7 and 11 this year, large and small companies -- not limited to construction -- will once again spend the time to make a concerted effort to prevent falls that lead to many workplace injuries and even fatalities. The goal is to increase safety and promote compliance with safety regulations. This will be the fifth annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration and The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health say the leading cause of fatalities in the construction industry remains falls. Records show that 991 construction workers nationwide lost their lives in 2016. More than one-third -- a total of 370 -- of those fatalities were linked to falls. During the stand-down, they expect to reach between seven and eight million employees in all states -- based on previous years' figures.

Safety authorities urge employers to focus on three aspects. The first is proper planning for the safe execution of every project. The next focus point should be the provision of the appropriate safety equipment, and the third and crucial point is training. Every worker must be trained in the proper and safe use of the personal protective equipment. They say employers in any industry whose employees work at heights should join the stand-down to underscore the importance of fall protection along with other safety requirements.

While the aim of the stand-down is to prevent workplace injuries and deaths that result from falls from heights, accidents will likely continue to occur. Injured victims and surviving family members who have lost loved ones in such incidents can seek the support and guidance of an experienced California workers' compensation attorney to assist with the navigation of workers' compensation benefits claims for financial relief. Medical expenses, end-of-life costs and lost wages are typically included in the benefits.

Source: ohsonline.com, "Fifth Stand-Down on Preventing Construction Falls Set for May 7-11", May 2, 2018

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