In the United States, you have a right to a safe workplace. You deserve a safe space where you get protection from serious injuries and fatalities. By law in most states, your employer must put your safety ahead of production levels and the bottom line.
Unfortunately, that’s not always what you get. Workplace dangers abound. Some, you can’t avoid. For instance, a construction worker who uses heavy machinery has some inherent risks to face, even when using the machinery properly and safely. In other situations, you could have avoided the risks. A worker who finds himself working at heights without fall protection equipment, because his employer did not want to buy the proper equipment, gets exposed to risks that he does not need to face.
It’s one thing to talk about workplace safety in a general sense, but it is quite another to look at the statistics and consider what they mean for workers all over California. To help paint a picture of the dangers that people face on a daily basis, here are a few key stats from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):
These statistics only deal with fatalities, and they’re already daunting. It gets worse when you factor in non-fatal accidents. Every seven seconds, a worker in the United States suffers an injury. That means that 4.7 million workers get hurt every year, or 12,900 workers daily. Those statistics come from news reports and the National Safety Council. Clearly, it’s dangerous to be a worker in the U.S., even if you survive the incident that puts you in the hospital.
If you do get hurt on the job, or if a loved one tragically loses their life, it is crucial that you know what rights you have and what legal steps you can take following the accident.