Oklahoma workers who have never suffered an injury in a workplace accident may be unsure how to proceed with workers' compensation claims when needed. Gaining the necessary information about the level of coverage offered by the fund, and the required steps to take if workplace injuries are suffered may protect workers and their families financially. Typically, workers are covered for both physical and mental injuries caused by work-related accidents.
When workers' compensation laws initially became effective, they was touted as an equal exchange between employers and workers. According to the law, workers who suffered workplace injuries are, in general, barred from filing lawsuits against their employers. Employers must provide employees with workers' compensation insurance coverage. Injured workers may pursue claims for benefits for medical care, related costs and lost wages to enable them to provide for their families.
Oklahoma workers in food industries where they are exposed to refrigeration systems that work with ammonia should be informed of the health risks they are facing on a daily basis. The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently cited a meat-processing facility for seven serious safety violations that could lead to workplace injuries. The citations include four violations related to anhydrous ammonia management.
According to the strict safety regulations prescribed by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Oklahoma employers are responsible for the safety of their workers. They are expected to inform workers about the safety hazards of their jobs and provide protective equipment as a preventative measure to help avoid workplace injuries. When workers are expected to operate machines, safety guards should be in place to avoid workers being pulled into dangerous equipment.
Company owners in Oklahoma and other states are expected to protect their workers against on-the-job injuries. However, it is not uncommon for unanticipated accidents to occur, and there should be contingency plans in place. In a recent construction accident in another state, the importance of being prepared for unforeseen incidents causing workplace injuries was underscored.
Oklahoma company owners are responsible for the safety of their workers. Regardless of the type of industry, preventing workplace injuries can only be achieved by following the strict safety regulations that are prescribed by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration. However, many workers suffer on-the-job injuries that are caused by negligent disregard of safety regulations by supervisors and employers.
Following up on our blog post about a tragic fatal forklift accident on Oct. 3 ("Forklift accident causes death of 2, workplace injury to 1"), a look at safety procedures may be appropriate. Statistics show that the number of forklift accidents per year may be as many as 35,000, and accident investigations usually indicate that most workplace injuries could have been avoided. While Oklahoma workers commonly rely on company owners to provide safe workplace surroundings, they may benefit from being fully aware of the imminent dangers posed by working on and around forklifts.
Mine workers in Oklahoma are likely aware of the many potential hazards associated with mining operations. Workplace safety is an important part of the duties for which supervisors are responsible. There are strict regulations in place to avoid workplace injuries, and mine authorities are required to ensure that their workers are provided with adequate safety training and the necessary protective clothing.
Most workers take comfort in knowing that any injuries they may suffer on the job will be covered by workers' compensation insurance. However, they may not realize that claims are often disputed, and it may take years before the worker receives any compensation. Oklahoma residents may be interested in a workers' compensation claim that was recently settled 18 years after the injury occurred. The case involves a bus driver from another state who suffered workplace injuries when he was 45 years old. Now, at the age of 63, he was awarded a settlement of $777,000.