Helping Construction Workers Stay Safe on the Job
Attorney Joe Stanley, in honor of Workers’ Memorial Day on April 28, an international day of remembrance and action for workers killed, disabled, injured or made unwell by their work, is educating construction workers on how to stay safe on the job. “Laws concerning construction regulation do not place an undue burden on the owner or contractor financially, but exist for the safety of the workers performing the dangerous work,” said Stanley, founder of The Stanley Law Offices, LLP, which regularly handles construction accident cases. “Serious accidents that happen on the job are almost always preventable. Injuries and accidents are oftentimes caused by a work environment that values completion over safe practices.”
New York Section 241(6) is a law that is supposed to hold contractors and owners accountable to safety regulations, but these regulations haven’t been changed or modified by the New York Board of Industrial Appeals since the 1970s. “As a result, the safety regulations are out-of-date and no one can agree on changing them for the protection of current construction workers,” added Stanley.
In order to better ensure construction workers stay safe on the job, Stanley lists the following three tips:
No. 1: Never work on an incomplete scaffold. Scaffolds are found on most construction sites, and are also the cause of numerous injuries. “Always ensure the scaffold you are working on is complete and sturdy, and has been inspected before you begin working on it,” stressed Stanley.
No. 2: Lift heavy objects properly. Back injuries on job sites are also common, due to improperly lifting heavy objects and loads. “Proper lifting can greatly reduce back injuries,” added Stanley. For more information about proper lifting, visit http://www.webmd.com/back-pain/proper-lifting-technique.
No. 3: Always use personal protective equipment. This can include, depending on one’s specific job, a back brace, gloves, climbing harness, safety goggles, breathing mask, reflective vest and hard hat.
“Keep in mind that workers’ compensation, in the long run, does not always help construction workers who are seriously injured,” concluded Stanley. “The job sites need to be safer places with clear regulations in order to prevent these serious accidents and injuries in the first place.”