Millions of men and women across the country drive trucks for a living. They spend long hours behind the wheel as they carry loads from one city to another. Though federal laws limit how long and how far they can drive, injuries may still occur. The long hours they spend at work often lead to repetitive injuries and other damages that can cost thousands in medical expenses and lead to workers' compensation claims.
Texas residents who work in the transportation and construction industry should know that work-related deaths around the country declined from 5,190 in 2016 to 5,147 in 2017, though their industries still compose the majority of fatalities. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in its annual report, states that the number is still high compared to the previous low of 4,551 in 2009.
After analyzing electrocution deaths among contract workers from 2012 to 2016, the National Fire Protection Association found that the majority of them are in the construction and extraction fields. Specifically, of the 13 percent of contract workers who died from electrocution, 68 percent were in those industries. Almost 30 percent of the deaths took place on construction sites. Contract workers in Texas will want to know what is causing this trend.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in which a compressed median nerve causes pain, tingling, numbness and weakness in the hand or wrist. Anyone who engages in activities that put the hands and wrists in awkward postures or that involve forceful, repetitive tasks is at risk. Unfortunately, some Texas jobs have a high rate of CTS among employees.
At least half of the severe injuries suffered each year by workers in Texas and around the country are not reported to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, according to a report released on Sept. 13 by the Department of Labor. The DOL's Office of Inspector General concludes in the report that changes made to OSHA's record-keeping rules, which were implemented in January 2015, have done little to address the issue.
Slip, trips and falls that occur in Texas workplaces can result in serious injuries for workers. Because these types of injuries can have a major impact on an employee's health and ability to work, employers should be diligent in uncovering and preventing these types of injuries from occurring.
Employers in Texas could pay a high cost for failing to keep their workers safe. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the cost of a worker's life is about $1 million. This takes into account legal fees, medical costs and workers' compensation expenses. Furthermore, an accident that is caused by an employer's willful negligence could lead to an OSHA fine of $129,336.
Texas workers could find various parts of their body at risk from exposure to machinery in the workplace. The term "pinch point" is used to define any part of a machine that could catch a person or a part of their body between moving parts, between moving and stationary parts or between materials and the machine itself. There can be a number of different pinch points that workers encounter when dealing with machinery on the job, including robotic machines, conveyor belts, power presses, metal forming and construction machines, rollers, assembly devices, power doors and hatches, plastic molding mechanisms, printing presses and power transmission equipment.
A report detailing the results of a yearlong study commissioned by the National Institute for Occupational Safety, Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that workers in Texas and around the country would be better protected if the three federal agencies were shared more data and worked together more closely to regulate employers and enforce workplace safety regulations. The conclusions were announced in a statement released to the press on Jan. 9.
The number of women who work in construction is increasing in Texas and in other areas. The National Association of Women in Construction has teamed up with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to try to make working conditions safer for women.