Would it shock you to learn that back injuries are the second-leading cause of lost work days?
After a long winter, everybody starts to look forward to the summer -- unless you have to work in the heat. Rising temperatures can prove a significant challenge for a lot of workers, especially those who have to work outside with little protection from the sun on road crews, building construction and similar jobs.
Although the legal status of marijuana remains in flux throughout the country, it has become a lawful and booming industry here in California and certain other states. It may not seem obvious, but one of the benefits of legalization is tracking and ensuring worker safety.
Individuals who work in the presence of heavy machinery face an ongoing chance of suffering a serious injury. While employers have instituted numerous safety precautions and required employees to use various safety devices, the devices sometimes fail or are not used at all. A worker for the BNSF Railway Co. recently recovered a $1.63 million verdict from a Bakersfield jury based on the railroad's failure to follow standard workplace safety procedures.
The failure of California construction firms to adhere to the state's safety regulations leads to numerous deaths and injuries among the state's workers. Cal/OSHA recently fined Bay Construction Co., located in Oakland, $141,075 for safety violations following a fatal accident in April of this year.
Working below ground is an unusually dangerous occupation. From miners to pipeline construction workers, the earth presents a constant hazard to anyone who descends below the surface. One of the biggest risks is the uncertain nature of the surrounding soil. Some soil deposits are naturally stable and present only a small risk to workers, while other types of soil are inherently unstable and threaten the worker with a high risk of collapse and injury or death.
Some workplaces pose more risks than others. Certain industries are inherently dangerous, meaning workers are aware that they could encounter various risks in the work environment. While safety precautions are taken, this does not always prevent injuries from happening.
In California, it's not workers employed in manufacturing or construction who run a higher risk of workplace injuries. Rather, those employed in health care actually are at greater risk for workplace injury than construction or manufacturing workers. Fortunately, health workers may be entitled to compensation if they become ill from an incident on the job or suffer a workplace injury.
In many cases, it is quite obvious that a Stockton, California, employee suffered a serious injury while on the job. Although there may be other issues with getting workers' compensation benefits, there is rarely any way to deny in good faith that the injury took place at work, which is one of the prerequisites for getting benefits.
Compared to the sheen of neighboring communities in the tech industry boom, Stockton is a blue collar town. As such, local employees are aware of the dangers that come with thankless jobs like industrial labor, factory work and construction. These jobs shape the culture of our community in obvious ways. But, is there something or someone unseen among this work?