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July 2013 Archives

An OSHA investigation focuses on keeping California jobsites safe

As many California natives know, construction work is dangerous work. Men and women working construction are routinely around heavy equipment and tons of raw materials, making it imperative for businesses to do everything possible to create a safe working environment for the employees. When an accident occurs on a construction site, there will often be an OSHA investigation to determine the cause of the accident.

New third-party OSHA violation inspections a bad public policy?

A letter of interpretation recently issued by OSHA has caused some concern for companies scheduled for an inspection by the federal agency. Third parties, such as union reps or other individuals who are not employees of the company being inspected, may now find it easier to participate in the walk-around. It can be in the best interests of employers in California and elsewhere to be prepared when an OSHA violation inspection is conducted with a third party who is not an authorized member of the federal agency.

Disaster caused by failure to maintain a safe working environment

As many California natives know, natural disasters can wreak havoc on a person's daily life. Earthquakes, tornadoes and massive storm systems have the potential to disrupt work flow and productivity. Sometimes, a heavy storm can even have serious health consequences and businesses may experience a failure to maintain a safe working environment for their employees.

California postal worker nailed for workers' compensation fraud

The United States Postal Service human resources employee found it strange that the former postal worker he was coming to visit was never there whenever he went to see him at his home. The California man was, after all, collecting disability payments since 2000. The HR man's suspicions were aroused and justifiably so -- the never-at-home man was busy running a Domino's Pizza franchise, first in Sunnyvale and then in Honolulu. He will now need to sell about 18 thousand pizzas in order to cover the more than $150,000 he was ordered to pay back to the United States Department of Labor as part of his workers' compensation fraud conviction. Before he begins working on those pizzas, however, the 51-year-old man will need to finish serving 90 days in county jail.

OSHA violation possible -- California man dies in summer heat

A 55-year-old California construction worker died while working in the summer heat during the last week of June. An investigation has begun into a possible OSHA violation. An order was also issued by the agency shutting down work at the site after the construction worker died while working at the location.

Failure to maintain a safe working environment can wreak havoc

Not all jobs in California are considered to be dangerous. There are those who work in environments that could be considered relatively safe. However, the truth of the matter is almost any job, anywhere, can result in devastating injury or even death. Any failure to maintain a safe working environment can result in tragic consequences. Recently, an employee for John Deere passed away from injuries sustained in a forklift accident.

Robbery reflects failure to maintain a safe working environment?

When California residents think of workplace injury, robbery typically doesn't come to mind. In most cases, a company's failure to maintain a safe working environment or things like an industrial accident are the commonplace considerations when the term "workplace injury" is used. However, a motel employee who was recently injured in an armed robbery may have a different opinion.

Taking heat precautions could prevent OSHA investigation

With the onset of summer come extremely high temperatures in California. Anyone who has even been outside in extreme heat for more than a few hours knows that the effects can be extremely debilitating. Dizziness, fainting and other more serious symptoms can result and lead to serious injury. Employers who have workers who remain outside for the majority of their workday must make sure that proper precautions are in place to ensure the safety of those workers, or they could be facing an OSHA investigation.

California employee fraud: Woman accused of false comp claim

Business owners have a wide range of responsibilities, including ensuring that their workers are safe while on the job. The vast majority of California employers take those duties seriously, and care deeply about the health and safety of those within their employ. It is important, however, that employers understand that there are individuals who strive to take advantage of workplace safety laws to make a fraudulent workers' compensation claim against their employers. One such case of apparent employee fraud was recently reported.

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