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Workplace survey reveals need to update safety planning

When people go to work in Texas, they anticipate a routine experience, but if an emergency occurs at work, they might not know what to do. A survey conducted by Rave Mobile Safety collected answers from 530 people about emergency planning and workplace safety. The results showed a need to update emergency plans beyond fire drills and generational differences about awareness of workplace safety.

Approximately 87 percent of respondents indicated that they knew their employers' escape plan during a fire and had practiced it. Only 57 percent of workers, however, said that their workplaces had plans for other types of threats like a hazardous materials release, severe weather or an active shooter. A security consultant commenting on the survey said that companies need to prepare for the possibility of workplace violence.

Knowledge of safety varies by age group. Roughly half of workers from younger generations were not sure if their workplaces had emergency plans. Among workers age 45 and older, only about one-third of them said that they were not aware of company policies for emergencies. Older workers also reported a greater willingness to report safety problems. Only 8 percent of younger workers said that they would alert an employer to safety issues.

Lapses in workplace safety could cause injuries. A person hurt at work has the right to seek workers' compensation benefits whether employer mistakes led to the injury or not. Although compensation for medical care and lost pay is available, a person might encounter resistance from the employer or insurer when applying for benefits. An attorney may help push back against tactics meant to deny or limit benefits. By organizing evidence about medical needs and identifying coverage within a policy, an attorney might be able to convince an insurer to pay an adequate settlement either through direct negotiation or litigation.

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