Workers in all industries in Florida are vulnerable to occupational hazards. When severe injuries or fatalities result from workplace accidents, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration typically launches investigations to determine the circumstances that caused them, and also the level of compliance with safety standards. However, regardless of the outcome of the inquiry, injured workers or surviving family members of workers who lost their lives in on-the-job accidents are usually eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
One such an OSHA investigation led to citations and proposed penalties for an ammunition manufacturer following an explosion that killed two workers. The safety agency discovered that when the 200-gram maximum explosive limit for pyrotechnic flash powder used in the blast booth was increased to 500 grams, modified safety procedures were not developed or implemented. Investigators also found that the employer disregarded the specifications of the engineer when the blast booths’ blowout panels were installed.
Additional safety violations included noncompliance with accepted engineering practices in the way employees used blast booths. The lack of proper employee training in operating procedures also contributed to the accident. An OSHA statement noted that compliance with safety standards could have prevented this accident that claimed two lives. The company now faces penalties exceeding $188,000.
Losing a loved one in an on-the-job accident is devastating. Along with emotional trauma, surviving family members have to deal with end-of-life expenses and unanticipated wage losses. An experienced Florida workers’ compensation attorney can assist them with the administrative and legal proceedings in pursuit of all applicable survivors’ benefits.