The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has implemented a series of rules and regulations at every workplace to keep employees safe. If you work in a high-risk environment such as a plant, factory, or refinery, you are putting yourself in harm’s way every day. OSHA regulations should be followed by your employer to ensure your safety.
OSHA Regulations for Plant Workers
Those working at plants and refineries are covered under OSHA’s Construction, General Industry, Maritime, and Agriculture standards. They are designed to protect you from a variety of workplace hazards by:
- Providing fall protection
- Preventing exposure to some infectious diseases
- Ensuring worker safety in confined spaces
- Preventing exposure to harmful chemicals
- Putting guards on dangerous machines to reduce the risk of injury
- Providing respirators and other PPE as appropriate
- Providing safety training in the worker’s native language
In order to stay in compliance with OSHA, these workplace accommodations should exist, and all employees should be made aware of them. Safety training should occur regularly: immediately for new employees, and then at least once every three years thereafter.
When OSHA Rules Aren’t Followed
Unfortunately, when a plant or refinery chooses to ignore OSHA’s standards or allows for a lapse in safety protocol, serious injury may occur. These injuries may include:
- Burns from a fire or exposure to dangerous chemicals
- Fall injuries, including bone fractures, brain injuries, or even permanent spinal cord damage
- Machinery malfunctions or user errors that lead to lacerations or, more drastically, an amputation
As an injured worker, you may not know if your accident was caused by an OSHA violation. It can be scary and overwhelming to experience a workplace injury, and the last thing you need on your plate is to worry about workplace regulations and the potential negligence on the part of your employer. However, it is important to find out if negligence played a role.
Documenting an Injury and Filing a Claim
OSHA requires plant and refinery operators to investigate any incident within 48 hours. This should include:
- Recording when the incident occurred
- Important details, including who was present and what injuries occurred
- Factors that contributed to the incident
- When the report regarding the incident was written
- What changes are to be made to avoid a future occurrence
Even if the employer is in OSHA compliance overall, failure to make this report is still a violation. As the injured party, you should also make note of these things if you are able and contact an attorney immediately.
How a Workplace Injury Attorney Can Help
An injury attorney can help you right away when you have been hurt, and time is of the essence. The sooner you build your case, the better your chances are of receiving the compensation you rightly deserve. As soon as you have been to the hospital and your health is stable enough to do so, reach out to a lawyer. They will research your case, collect evidence, and work on your behalf to resolve everything as quickly as possible.
At SJ Injury Attorneys, we have experience winning compensation for plant and refinery workers who have been injured on the job. Many times these injuries are caused by OSHA violations. This means that filing a claim does not only help you but also potentially protects others from being injured in the future. Call us today for a consultation. You deserve to be safe and protected at your job.