With the imminent end of the school year, thousands of high school and college students in California will be looking forward to reporting for their summer jobs. This could be the ideal start of a planned career or just a way of earning an income, but workers must never lose sight of safety hazards that could lead to workplace injuries. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires employers to prioritize employee safety, regardless of the age or level of experience of workers.
As the California workforce grows, so does the number of serious and fatal workplace injuries. The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health says that all workplace accidents are preventable, and it is the responsibility of employers to provide safe work environments. They must also comply with safety standards, failing which might lead to third-party cases in which employers are accused of negligence.
Following the massive 2018 wildfires, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health is seeking emergency regulations to protect workers from smoke inhalation. The intention is to limit smoke-related workplace injuries. The special rules will apply to all workers who are exposed to smoke from wildfires.
Southern California is undoubtedly a hot-spot for those who like to party. Coachella draws thousands of music and festival fans to our location every year. Along with all the warm weather and good vibes, comes the duties of a bartender to keep the party going. However, workers in this type of industry face a great amount of pressure to satisfy the demands of the patrons with little to no breaks.
The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health reports that 74 outdoor workers suffered heat illness last year. One of the victims was a landscaper who lost his life. The agency is proactive in its quest to limit the number of heat-related workplace injuries this coming summer.
The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health require employers to provide safe work environments. The rules include the duty to provide adequate safety training and ongoing monitoring to ensure that workers do not become complacent and take shortcuts. One of the most frequently committed shortcuts that leads to many workplace injuries involves using the wrong tool for the job because it is handy and similar to the required tool.
Public safety workers in California and other states are reported to be particularly vulnerable to certain injury types. Safety authorities say firefighters, EMTs and police officers suffer more musculoskeletal disorders and cardiovascular diseases than employees in other industries. Also, these public safety workers are often involved in auto crashes and incidents of workplace violence that cause workplace injuries.
California was the first state to establish safety standards to protect outdoor workers from excessive heat exposure. Safety authorities suggest that California might also be the first to set safety limits for indoor workers. Heat-related workplace injuries could be deadly, and the heat levels in California over recent years have been higher than ever, causing concern over the impact of climate change on hundreds of thousands of indoor workers.
While similar hazards may exist in all California workplaces, others are unique to particular industries. Many of the workers' compensation claims that are filed each year arose from exposure to hazardous chemicals. Safety authorities require employers to inform employees of the risks posed by chemicals with which they have to work, and employers must also provide the necessary personal protective equipment.
Workers in the California cannabis industry might have questions about their rights to safe workplace environments and the protection their employers should provide. The California Division of Safety and Health have not established safety standards that apply specifically to the workplace injuries in the marijuana industry, but, just as in any other sector, employers must protect the safety and health of employees. They must also mitigate any job-related hazards.