Employers in Oklahoma and across the country must provide employees with work environments that are free of known hazards. Federal law mandates that employers must address any dangers that threaten the health and safety of workers. Furthermore, employees are entitled to speak up and report workplace injuries or unsafe conditions and near misses without fearing retaliation.
It is never a bad idea for workers to gain knowledge about their rights in the workplace, and to learn the procedures for reporting unsafe work conditions. Understanding potential hazards is vital, and for that reason, employers must provide safety training in a language understood by the workers. Machines and equipment must be equipped with the necessary safety devices, and be in good working order.
The necessary personal protective equipment -- including gloves, fall arrest harness, eye and ear protection -- must be provided, along with training in the correct use of the PPE. Workers must also be protected against the dangers posed by toxic chemicals. When hazardous conditions are left unaddressed, workers are entitled to request an inspection by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Workers then have access to inspection reports and also all records related to occupational illness and injuries.
Oklahoma workers who fall victim to workplace injuries are entitled to seek financial relief to cover medical expenses and lost wages. The system is a no-fault program, which covers all occupational injuries and illnesses, regardless of who caused the incident. An experienced workers' compensation attorney can simplify the complicated administrative and legal proceedings regarding the benefits claims process. Workers whose injuries caused permanent disabilities may be entitled to additional benefits.