Articles Tagged with fall safety

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Blackwell-Law-Firm-Alabama-Accident-Injury-Lawyers-256-261-1315-300x300In a post earlier this year I asked, Is Dollar General An Unsafe Work Environment? I wrote that post after OSHA issued over $300,000 in citations due to safety issues at one of the company’s Alabama stores.

Over the years, I’ve represented numerous Dollar General employees who were injured on-the-job. In my past cases, these employees were far, far overworked. They functioned in an unsafe and understaffed environment. They were subjected to daily tasks that put them at risk of serious personal injury. I’ve represented Dollar General employees with work comp claims caused by falling from unsafe heights, tripping over store hazards, climbing into store dumpsters as required, falling from dangerous ladders and unloading heavy truckloads of merchandise with little help. Some of these workers suffer permanent, disabling injuries that altered their lives.

In a press release just days ago, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) dropped the hammer on Dollar General. When OSHA issues a press release with this title, you know things are serious:

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Personal Injury Lawyers HuntsvilleThe Occupational Health & Safety Administration (OSHA) recently released its Top 10 list of safety violations for 2021. This list includes the most-cited safety issues by OSHA. I always study the list and compare it to prior years.

What do you see when you look at the annual Top 10 safety violation list? If you read the annual list, you will quickly notice the same dangerous violations seem to make the list every year. Some of the safety issues might move up-or-down a couple places. But, the same problems exist every year. And, one violation seems to take the top spot almost every single year.

What is the top safety violation year-after-year? Fall protection! In fact, fall protection has ranked number one for the last 11 straight years. In recent years, I’ve represented numerous workers who suffered disabling personal injuries in worksite falls from heights. I’ve also represented families who lost a loved one in a worksite fall. All of these tragedies had one thing in common — Management could have prevented the serious accident with a few simple safety procedures.

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Huntsville Injury LawyersWith poultry giant Tyson, the safety hits just keep coming! Last week, I wrote about Tyson managers actually gambling on worker safety. That is, managers abandoned their workers in the midst of a pandemic and then gambled on how many would get sick. That’s horrible. You can read my article titled When Management Bets Against Worker Safety on this blog.

The day after I published my latest article, I read about more poultry industry mis-conduct that puts worker lives at risk. According to a new article, Tyson managers actually directed language interpreters to misrepresent safety conditions to the company’s hispanic workers. You can read that article titled Tyson Accused of Misleading Interpreters at Virus-Hit Plant at the Claims Journal website.

Really? When Covid strikes its workforce, management abandons the plant floor. Management stops safety meetings. Management leaves the workers to fend for themselves. Then, management gambles on how many will get sick? Coronavirus has run rampant through poultry plants in Alabama and across the United States.

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BLACKWELL-LAW-FIRM-ALABAMA-WORKPLACE-SAFETY-LAWYERS-300x300The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently announced the Top 10 most frequently cited workplace safety violations for 2019. What were they?

  1. Fall Protection – General Requirements
  2. Hazard Communication
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Blackwell Law Firm -- Alabama Accident & Injury Trial LawyersFalls from heights are a leading cause of death and disability on construction sites. According to OSHA, falls cause one-third (1/3) of all construction-related deaths. Workers who survive long falls are often left with a lifetime of chronic pain and disability. In my practice, I’ve had numerous clients who suffered severe injury from falls on construction or industrial sites. I’ve seen many types of falls from heights. Yet, one piece of equipment has been involved in far too many disabling falls — The Scissors Lift.

A recent headline told the tragic story of a young man who died when 50 mile per hour winds toppled the extended lift from which he was working. The death was easily preventable with just a little safety planning. No worker should be required to use a lift outside in bad weather. Too often, deaths like this one go unmentioned. This time, the event made national news. It involved a college student working for the athletic department of a major university. What are a few easily preventable scissors lift falls I’ve seen as an attorney?

  • Case Number 1: The scene was a large construction project on Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville. The contractor was using extended, moving scissors lifts to erect the metal ceiling. A lift toppled because the concrete floor below was uneven. The worker fell almost 30 feet. He survived but was left permanently and totally disabled. The accident could have easily been prevented. Yet, the safe use of lifts was never addressed prior to the fall. After a week-long trial, we were able to recover damages for the severely disabled worker.
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Redstone_Arsenal-300x240Look at a map of northern Alabama. You cannot miss it. A huge area of federal land next to Huntsville and Madison. It’s Redstone Arsenal.

It’s not just the huge amount of land. Redstone Arsenal plays a huge role in our community and economy. A 2010 study revealed Redstone accounted for 6% of Alabama’s GDP. The area continues to grow! Because of the significant traffic and movement in and around Redstone each day, it’s not surprising that serious personal injuries occur on this facility just like they do elsewhere. What happens when someone suffers a car accident on Redstone Arsenal? What happens when someone suffers a personal injury on Redstone Arsenal of any type?

Two years ago, I tried a case in Madison County where a construction worker fell while working at a building project on Redstone. My client suffered tremendous and disabling injuries in the fall. The case was not against the federal government. We claimed the general contractor (a private construction company) created an unsafe and dangerous worksite. We were able to help our client recover both compensatory damages and workers compensation benefits for his injures.

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