Sunday, May 26, 2013

Workplace Accidents: Do You Really Have the Right to Complain?

It is funny how when you were young, you never really considered why the oldies are always so cautious when they see you running everywhere. This often happens when you are playing with friends. They are afraid you would hurt yourself. If you were a girl, having bruises is not acceptable. Bruises do not look good on girls and a girl should always be prim and proper. Now if you were a boy, they would not want people to mistake you for a bully or a troublemaker. Only cute and smart boys make mama proud. You would think; playing is fun so who cares about being bruised?

Nevertheless, time and experience help you see things differently. Injuries are no longer acceptable especially if they happened while you are out and having fun. Now that you are older, you realize how mild and serious injuries hurt your budget. If you do not have the necessary insurance, you will use up all your savings too. In addition, physical injuries affect your school, work performance or both. This would mean that you have to exert more effort to get back on track. You might need to stop studying or working too. Now that you are older, you avoid injuries as much as you can. In fact, you are more cautious than you think.

However, it is a different story when injury occurs at work. On the job, you and your employer should make sure injuries do not happen. They train you on how to use the machines and equipment properly. You should also follow workplace policies and standards for health and safety. The company is responsible for any untoward incidents that happen to you while you are doing your job. However, you are also personally liable if these untoward incidents happen because of your own wrongdoing. In cases where you and your company are both at fault, you should not shoulder the consequences all by yourself. You have the right to complain.

If injuries happen and the company does not have all the necessary precautions such as OSHA posters, then the law states that they should pay for fines or penalties. In fact, for not having the right posters in the right places alone, the penalty reaches to a maximum of $7,000. You may even sue them for damages as well. Millions of people suffer from injuries in the workplace yearly. There are those who are lucky enough to survive. However, thousands of them suffer severe physical injuries and others die.

Companies can avoid workplace accidents if only they follow labor law requirements when it comes to posters like OSHA. These Federal labor law posters are free. The labor law posters should be in your work premises. If you think your company is not complying with any of these OSHA poster requirements then you can always ask your company to comply. You can even ask OSHA to have a site inspection in your company if you think there are hazards that can lead to workplace accidents. Voice out your concerns before it is too late. Your work is important but your life matters more.  

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