Dealing with a workplace accident can be a nightmare. You’re just trying to do your job when all of a sudden you slip and hurt your back, trip over exposed wiring, or cut yourself on a misplaced tool.
Most employers work hard to ensure their sites are free of dangerous conditions, often performing safety checks and compliance audits. However, despite their best efforts, they can’t control everything all of the time. Whether it’s faulty equipment, unsafe walkways, or noxious chemicals, American workers face workplace dangers daily. Thankfully, you have rights to protect your safety.
Employee Rights and Workplace Accidents
An injury is no picnic. Being injured in the course of your job can be especially upsetting. While federal and state governments strive to protect workers, they can’t be on every worksite.
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, or the OSH Act, aims to protect workers from unsafe conditions. To be in compliance, employers must provide or create work conditions that are free from known dangers. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, OSHA, enforces the standards set out by the OSH Act. Their online brochure explains more.
The OSH Act allows workers to file complaints about unsafe conditions without fear of retaliation. It also allows them access to any testing done by their employer to ensure safe conditions and access to medical records.
Worker’s compensation is separate from the OSH Act and is a type of insurance for those injured during the course of their jobs. It is state regulated and mandated.
If you work for a federal employer, the federal government will handle your claim. You can learn more info on the Department of Labor’s website.
If you work for a private employer in South Carolina, the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission provides information in this PDF on how to file a workers’ comp claim or how to appeal one. To be frank, it can be a bit difficult to follow unless you’re used to reading legal documents or technical manuals.
Generally, employees receive information about workers’ compensation or disability pay when they sign on with a new employer. Different employers may have different procedures to follow, so it’s important to speak with someone who knows and understands where you should seek medical attention and how to file a claim.
Causes of Workplace Accidents
Workplace accidents and injuries can be caused by:
- Environmental factors such as noxious chemicals
- Lack of appropriate training
- Safety violations
- Malfunctioning equipment
- Lack of appropriate signage
- Obstructed walkways or exits
If you believe that your workplace is unsafe, consider speaking with a supervisor or making a claim with OSHA to ensure the situation is dealt with.
Seeking Help from a Myrtle Beach Workplace Accident Lawyer
If you’ve been seriously injured in a workplace accident, a consulting with a Myrtle Beach work injury lawyer may be able to help you.
A Myrtle Beach workplace accident lawyer can help you as you seek workers’ compensation or file a claim against an employer for unsafe work conditions. If you’ve filed a claim and are having difficulty receiving compensation for your injury, a Myrtle Beach workplace accident lawyer can help you get the answers you deserve.
Workers help make the world go round. The government understands this and has put legislation in place to help protect those who work hard. However, it is ultimately an employer’s responsibility to comply with the law and ensure a safe workplace. If you feel your employer has neglected their legal responsibility and has created an unsafe environment that may have lead to your injury, consulting with a Myrtle Beach work injury lawyer is an important step to seeking compensation.