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Greensboro Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Confined spaces: Keeping safe in small, tight spots

  • 22
  • July
    2015

Working in confined spaces is very hard; some people struggle with claustrophobia, and others may be okay with the space but still want to know that it's safe to be inside. Because workers who are in confined spaces are at risk, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has provided facts about confined spaces and new construction standards to make them safer for those working inside.

What is a confined space? The OSHA has stated that a confined space is an area that is large enough to fit a worker inside, has a limited entry or exit point, and is not designed to have continuous occupancy. For example, a well could be considered a confined space.

How workers' compensation and a third party lawsuit work together

  • 15
  • July
    2015

Most of the time, receiving workers' compensation means you have no need to pursue a personal injury claim. However, there are occasions when injured North Carolina workers can pursue both options. Workers' compensation provides injured workers with benefits while also protecting the employer, but sometimes a third party might have contributed to workplace injuries. When this occurs, the injured party may be able to seek relief from both sources.

Here are some situations in which an injured employee may be able to pursue a personal injury suit.

Scaffolding accident injures 2 North Carolina workers

  • 06
  • July
    2015

A project to replace the lighting in the gymnasium at the New Hanover County High School went awry last week when the scaffolding malfunctioned. News reports indicate two electricians fell during the project, resulting in injuries to both of the men. Rick Holliday, the deputy superintendent, indicated he received a call regarding the accident in the morning hours of Wednesday, July 1.

Holliday went on to report that the project had been ongoing the entire week with the work being conducted by two school maintenance workers. He reported that the work was finished at the time of the accident but workers were moving some of the gym banners so the new lighting would not be obstructed. While the workers were moving the banners, the scaffolding reportedly malfunctioned causing the two employees to fall.

How safe is my North Carolina industrial workplace?

  • 30
  • June
    2015

Like other places across America, the state of North Carolina takes workplace safety quite seriously. However, despite any government-sponsored laws or guidelines, not all workplaces provide a safe working environment. It is a great idea to ask questions in order to develop an understanding of how safe a work location really is, but you can also learn by paying attention to how things are done at your place of work.

Working in industrial settings carries a little more risk than working in an office or a retail setting. However, the risk is very minimal when the proper safety procedures are firmly in place. If you are new to industrial employment, here are just a few things to look for in determining if your workplace is safe.

What are the risks of working around asbestos?

  • 22
  • June
    2015

For decades, it has been widely-known that asbestos can cause life-threatening illnesses and diseases. Asbestos is made up of minerals that can be used in several industries. The danger occurs when asbestos is disturbed or degrades and tiny particles are released into the atmosphere. Before this knowledge became widespread, many people suffered or perished due to asbestos exposure in the workplace as well as in buildings or homes containing asbestos.

Fortunately, these illnesses and deaths have taught employers and organizations like Occupational Safety and Health Administration many lessons about the substance. It is now possible to work around asbestos if absolutely necessary by following strict safety guidelines at all times. However, it is still important to understand fully the hazards associated with this dangerous material before performing any work with or near asbestos.

Basic facts about North Carolina workers' compensation

  • 16
  • June
    2015

Injured North Carolina industrial workers who have had no prior experience with the workers' compensation process frequently feel confused about their rights and duties. Often, employers can answer questions injured workers may have, but in some cases, the employer does not have the right information. If you have recently been injured at work or would simply like to educate yourself about workers' compensation, here are a few basic facts to consider.

Workers' comp coverage: Most industrial employers are required by law to have workers' compensation insurance coverage. This protects both the workforce and the employer and includes some form of coverage for independent contractors as well as salaried staff.

Could smartphone apps be effective at improving workplace safety?

  • 12
  • June
    2015

Considering how often we're reminded not to use our phones at work, it may come as a surprise that certain smartphone apps are actually welcome in the workplace. In fact, mobile apps were among the hottest topics at a recent conference for environmental, health and safety professionals. The topic was so important to the folks at the American Society of Safety Engineers that its national director of compliance programs performed an exhaustive review of what's currently available and published a list of the Top 10 most valuable safety apps:

  • OSHA Heat Safety Tool
  • NIOSH Pocket Guide (to hazardous chemicals)
  • NIOSH Ladder Safety
  • Fall Clear Lite
  • Electrical Safety Tests
  • ILO Ergonomic Checkpoints
  • I-Auditor
  • Incident Cost Calculator
  • AccuWeather
  • Pocket First Aid

8 North Carolina workers suffer construction injuries

  • 23
  • August
    2013

Construction industry jobs often offer good pay during the building season. However, this type of work can also include employees suffering from construction injuries. One such incident at a North Carolina high school has caused several workers to be injured.

The late morning accident is said to have happened when the temporary staging structure fell apart while the work crew were on it. The construction workers were continuing work on the planned addition to the school. Eight employees were said to have been injured. Of the total injured, two were hurt severely enough to have required helicopters to take them to hospitals.

North Carolina scaffolding collapses: 8 injured at high school

  • 21
  • August
    2013

Construction workers are typically aware of the increased risk of dangers that come from working in their industry. Dangers run the gamut from being injured while running dangerous equipment to scaffolding collapses when working above the ground. One recent scaffolding collapse led to eight workers suffering various injuries at a North Carolina high school. The construction workers were busy adding to an extension at McDowell High School in Marion.

The scaffolding collapse occurred in the morning on a recent Monday and caused eight workers to plummet nearly 40 feet as the scaffolding broke apart. Emergency workers rushed to the scene and had to free at least two workers who were cut off from easy escape after the collapse. One of those workers was trapped atop a wall made of cinder blocks for just under an hour. He narrowly missed the potential for serious injury considering that firefighters had just managed to free him when the area where he had been trapped fell away.

North Carolina farm workers exposed to toxic substances

  • 14
  • August
    2013

While a work injury can occur for employees in almost any occupation, those who work with heavy equipment or perform strenuous manual labor typically have more of a risk than others. Equipment can malfunction, and employees could potentially be exposed to toxic substances. If employers do not stay up-to-date on improvements and replacements, defective equipment can cause devastating injuries. If employers are found in violation of not replacing hazardous equipment or providing proper training, they could face fines as well as possible workers' compensation claims.

Two workers at a North Carolina farming company were found down in the back of a semi-truck trailer while they were working to load a blackberry order. According to reports, a person found the two workers and called emergency services. The two were transported to area hospitals where one was pronounced dead due to cardiac arrest, and the other was treated and later released.

Jay Gervasi, P.A.
910 North Elm Street
Greensboro, NC 27401
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