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What can you do to stay safe on the job?

When you go to work, you expect to come home at the end of the day. In fact, many workers count the hours until they can leave, never imagining that they may not ever see their families again.

Unfortunately, there are hundreds of work-related deaths that occur each year in California. Some are truly accidents and weren't preventable, but on the whole, most workplace accidents can be avoided with some safety precautions in place.

Data from April 2017 showed that 388 workers died in the state in 2015 while on the job. That means more than one person died each day while on the job in the state. California does fall below the national fatality rate, which is 3.4 deaths per 100,000 full-time workers, but that doesn't mean any death is acceptable. What's worse is that the majority of people killed on the job are part of the immigrant community.

What can you do to help prevent on-the-job deaths and injuries?

First, know your environment. If you're working in extreme heat or cold, make sure you have areas where workers can warm up or cool down. Heat exhaustion, frostbite and other conditions are avoidable with good precautions in place.

Next, look at safety equipment. If there are fall hazards, have workers wear harnesses and safety tethers when possible. Wear hardhats to prevent head injuries.

Finally, remember that safety starts with you. Everyone who comes to your workplace should have appropriate safety training and be aware of any hazards present, so they know what to report and how to stay safe on the job.

Source: EHS Today, "Dying at Work in California: 388 Workers Didn't Come Home," Sandy Smith, accessed March 13, 2018

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