Workplace safety is a top priority for OSHA. It created the NFPA 70E standard several years ago to ensure that workers in North Carolina and throughout the country are safe from electrical hazards. Ideally, companies will see the standard as a set of guidelines that can be followed to their benefit. By keeping electrical hazards to a minimum, businesses will have fewer injuries that reduce productivity and cost them money.
According to the Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index, a serious injury is any incident that causes a person to miss five or more days of work. These injuries in North Carolina and other states are categorized and ranked to find out which incidents are causing the biggest problems for employers and employees. The leading cause in all types of industries was overexertion involving outside sources, which costs the economy more than $13 billion every year.
Employers and employees in North Carolina should focus more on eliminating risks than establishing rigid safety protocols. One key reason is that workers tend to think of workplace safety as something that their employers do on their own. However, workers are acutely aware of the risks that they face whenever performing a task. By focusing more on eliminating risks as opposed to imposing safety tasks, they are more likely to take ownership of the process.
Farm workers in North Carolina and across the U.S. may be in danger of developing back pain as a result of the vibrations caused by farm machinery. In a NIOSH-funded study, researchers from the University of Iowa examined vibration levels for 112 pieces of machinery as they were being used by 55 farmers. The machines included tractors, combines, forklifts, bobcats and ATVs.
From 2014 to 2018, Tesla was issued a total of 54 OSHA violations. This is three times higher than all the OSHA violations combined that were issued to all the other top 10 auto plants in the U.S. Nissan came in second with five violations, followed by Toyota and Ford with four violations. North Carolina residents may wonder why Tesla's number is so high.
Workers in North Carolina and throughout the country could face serious harm if exposed to carbon monoxide. On Feb. 12, OSHA sent out a notice to employers reminding them of their duties to keep employees safe from the gas. Carbon monoxide can be most dangerous to workers when they are in poorly ventilated spaces or buildings. The gas itself is odorless and colorless, which makes it almost impossible to be detected without the help of equipment.
Of all work-related injuries in North Carolina and across the U.S., 10 to 20 percent result in temporary or permanent vision loss. Approximately 2,000 people incur eye injuries on the job every day, according to PreventBlindness.org, and 1 in 10 of these result in days off from work. This is why eye protection is essential in the workplace.
Truck drivers in North Carolina could be at serious risk for shoulder injuries on the job. When truck drivers raise or lower trailers to load or unload goods, they could injure their shoulders by cranking the truck's landing gear. However, one study conducted by North Carolina State University and the Washington Department of Labor and Industry notes that drivers can help to protect themselves by strategically positioning their bodies when cranking the gears.
Large employers in North Carolina will no longer have to file individual incident reports for workplace accidents and injuries, according to a new action by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA announced on Jan. 24 that it was eliminating a rule created by the Obama administration for companies employing more than 250 people that mandated the filing of two electronic forms if workers were injured, made ill or killed in the workplace. Form 300 and Form 301 identified the injured workers, the type of injury involved and the effects of the injury, including missed work days or altered job duties.
Many diligent employers in North Carolina want to do what they can to create a safe, productive work environment for employees. Still, there are times when unsafe working conditions exist for one reason or another. Each year, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration spotlights the most common violations in an effort to encourage employers to take appropriate safety measures. OSHA breaks its violations down into industry segments. Below are the common issues for the printing industry.