Hazards accompany most occupations, but some industries carry a particularly high number of injuries on the job. Industries such as manufacturing are vital to our society, but the use of heavy machinery and other dangerous factors in the work environment put industrial workers in danger of accidents if careful safety practices are not observed.
Industries with the highest rates of workplace injuries include:
- Chemicals plants and refineries
Workplaces such as these expose employees to certain risks, many of which carry the potential to cause severe injuries or death. In the event of an accident, workers could face broken bones, amputation, burns, poisoning, or death. Certain organizations, such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), regulate the steps an employer must take in order to reduce the risk of industrial accidents and mitigate the damage resulting from incidents.
Heavy machinery aids with tasks ranging from molding, bending, moving, and heating items to shipping products and expediting work processes. With hundreds of moving parts and massive amounts of force behind some tasks, workers who operate or work around machines must take care not to be caught in the parts. Some of the most common injuries involving machinery include the loss of a worker’s finger or hand after getting caught in a machine.
Some work sites, such as chemical plants and manufacturing factories, require the use of hazardous chemicals to produce goods, clean items, or fulfill a number of other tasks. Toxins can range from a mild irritation to the lungs to severely burning the skin on contact. The respiratory system, eyes, and skin are the most vulnerable to dangerous chemicals, and workers must take care to protect themselves from toxic substances. OSHA provides a list of permissible exposure limits (PELs) for toxic chemicals in the workplace, regulating how much of each toxin a worker can legally be exposed to in a certain timeframe.
Steps to promote safety in industrial workplaces include:
- Equipment which is regularly inspected and maintained
- Hard hats
- Goggles, glasses, and faceplates
- Thorough and regularly updated training for all employees
- Safe lifting practices for heavy loads
- Emergency protocols, in case of an explosion or required evacuation
- Fire prevention and response plans, including fire extinguishers and sprinkler systems
If a company, manager, or other responsible party does not take proper precautions in protecting workers, they may be liable for any resulting damages. Employees who have been hurt in an industrial accident could find themselves facing massive medical bills, the cost of extended care, and an inability to work. These financial burdens may fall to the employer if negligence was involved.
Filing a Claim with the Help of a Texas Industrial Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in an industrial accident, an experienced workplace injury attorney can help you determine who is liable. The Gutierrez Law Firm has taken on a number of intimidating companies, and we are not afraid to help you seek out compensation after an accident. Schedule your appointment today to review your case with an experienced personal injury lawyer.