Any construction worker in Pennsylvania should know what the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is. While the agency has worked with nearly every industry when there are reports of workplace accidents and violations, few have matched the number of run-ins they’ve had with the construction industry. They have been instrumental in helping thousands of workers get compensation after they suffer on the job.
While their safety inspections and regulations have resulted in a dramatic drop in workplace accidents and deaths within the last few decades, they still have plenty of work to do every year. Recent announcements indicate that OSHA site inspections are likely to increase in the near future.
Though most construction workers are familiar with OSHA’s inspections that take place after a worker’s injury or structure collapse, many of them don’t realize they can still do it during the project. If you or a loved one are in the construction industry, you need to keep this in mind if you have concerns with safety hazards on the job.
A problematic picture
Recently, construction companies from New York and Pennsylvania came under fire when OSHA received a photo of a worker carrying a board on a scaffold in Ithaca, New York. The scaffold had no guardrails and no safe access to it, the worker did not have a safety harness on him and there was no sufficient overhead protection for the workers underneath the scaffold.
After receiving photographic evidence of safety neglect, OSHA charged both companies thousands of dollars for their serious violations. Even though they aren’t nearly as much as you’d see after a work injury or death, the Pennsylvania company is choosing to dispute most of these citations. Other construction companies in Ithaca condemned the two companies for their violations and how they could have been safer if they partnered with unions.
Reporting before it’s too late
This story demonstrates that OSHA doesn’t have to see a major accident occur in the news to take action. If construction workers spot safety hazards that the employers are refusing to take care of or bring attention to, they should report it as soon as they can before someone gets seriously hurt. According to OSHA, scaffolding violations are the third most frequently cited standards for them.
OSHA’s inspections can be critical if you end up injured on the job due to an oversight on the site. As they are looking into the problem, contact a construction injury attorney that can help you receive compensation for your injuries.