OSHA Cracking down on CA Employers Who Hide Construction Injuries

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The construction industry is one of the most dangerous work places in the country.  It is also a sector that has some of the highest rates of underreporting of injuries.  Many injuries in the sector are underreported, because employers who report higher than average workplace injuries are more likely to be subject to inspections by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.  Employers have much incentive to underreport injuries, and when this happens, it can make it hard for OSHA and Los Angeles construction accident lawyers to determine the extent, nature and severity of injuries that have occurred every year.

Fortunately, OSHA is undertaking extensive inspections of workplaces across the country to determine the extent of underreporting.  The agency plans to conduct these inspections over a two-year period, and so far, it has managed to inspect about 185 workplaces.  It plans to inspect a total of 380 by the end of the year.  However, resources are stretched, and the agency needs dozens of inspectors to be able to complete this task.

Construction work places in California can be the site of several injuries, including scaffolding accidents and collapses, trench cave-ins, electrical accidents and electrocutions, slip and fall accidents, and other injuries.  Many of these injuries go undocumented, because employers want to present a picture of the perfect workplace to the world.  Employers hold so-called safety contests that reward employees for an ”injury free workplace.” 

In many cases, it's not so much that injuries have not occurred, as much as they have not been reported.


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