Employers in all industries in Florida must protect the health and safety of employees. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration prescribes general safety regulations along with some rules that apply to particular industries. A significant number of workers' compensation benefits claims are filed each year after preventable workplace accidents injure or kill workers.
The hazards of working with explosives are obvious, and employers in this field must ensure compliance with safety regulations to protect employees and the public. Federal and state authorities have designed safe practices for all explosive-related activities. In Florida and other states, workers' compensation claims are frequently filed after explosions that kill or maim workers.
Employees in the transportation industry haul merchandise nationwide to keep store shelves loaded and meet the expectations of consumers. The truckers and other workers who assist with the loading and unloading of goods face several safety hazards. Many workers' compensation claims in Florida follow injuries suffered by commercial truck drivers and others who work on and around big rigs.
Following the devastating storms that hit Florida recently, emergency crews and workers who are involved in cleanup and recovery operations will be exposed to numerous hazards that could be life-threatening. While the state-regulated workers' compensation insurance system will cover those who suffer injuries at this time, workers can take some precautions. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration warned crews of the common dangers during flood recovery operations.
First responders are exposed to trauma every single day. The stress of their jobs is exacerbated by the fact that they can never be prepared for what they will encounter because there is no telling where the next call will take them. However, law enforcement officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians and paramedics might find comfort in learning that post-traumatic stress disorder is now recognized by Florida law as an occupational disease that is covered by workers' compensation.
Burn injury hazards exist in many workplaces in Florida, and the lack of adequate safety training puts many workers at risk. Thousands of injured workers file workers' compensation benefit claims every year, of which a significant percentage involve burns. Employers are responsible for the health and safety of employees, and their responsibilities include providing adequate safety training and the necessary personal protective equipment.
A spokesperson for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in Florida says fall protection for employees who work at heights is not optional; it is a mandatory legal requirement. This followed the conclusion of a March investigation at a roofing company in Jacksonville. A significant number of workers' compensation claims involve falls from elevated levels.
Based on the safety regulations prescribed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, employees in Florida should be able to rely on their employers to provide work environments that are free of known hazards. Although accidents can certainly happen despite safety precautions, it is unacceptable for employers to put their employees' lives on the line willfully. Fortunately, the state's workers' compensation insurance program is there to protect injured workers and provide financial assistance to families who lose loved ones in work-related accidents.
Demolitions of multi-story buildings are dangerous procedures that often leave construction workers injured. Although their workers' compensation insurance benefits typically cover medical expenses, these victims are sometimes left with long-term health problems or disabilities. An unplanned collapse of a building being demolished in Florida recently caused critical injuries to a construction worker.
Regardless of how careful workers are, accidents will happen. Unfortunately, lives are sometimes lost, as is evident in the number of workers' compensation survivors' benefits claims filed in Florida every year. One such tragic workplace accident occurred at Disney's Pop Century Resort in Lake Buena Vista on a recent Monday.