In a previous post on this blog, we discussed negligence and workers’ compensation. In that post, which can be read by clicking here, we explained that an injury or illness suffered on the job does not need to be the result of recklessness or negligence for people to be eligible for workers’ compensation.
However, there are numerous workplace accidents that are the result of hazardous job sites. While negligence or unsafe conditions are not required to pursue a workers’ compensation claim, they can cause an accident that could have been avoided. In order to prevent many workplace accidents from happening, Ohio workers should know that they can file a complaint with the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration.
Many people only know of OSHA as the agency that inspects a workplace after an accident has already happened; but this is only part of what the agency does. Inspectors at OSHA also respond to complaints of workplace hazards and make recommendations or issue fines for employers who fail to comply with OSHA safety standards.
Filing a report of unsafe conditions can be critical to the safety of workers, but too many people do not understand why or how they should file a complaint with OSHA. The main reason why people should file a complaint is that it can force employers to address hazards before an accident occurs.
In order to file a complaint, a worker needs to report information about unsafe conditions to OSHA including how long a condition has existed, what the hazard is and how many workers may be exposed to the hazard. Complaints can be filed in a number of ways including online and by calling the local OSHA office.
It is also important to note that workers should not be afraid that they will be punished for reporting unsafe conditions. The law protects workers from being harassed, fired, demoted, or discriminated against for filing an OSHA complaint.
Whether a complaint is filed with OSHA or not, workers should know that they may be eligible for financial compensation in the event of a workplace injury or illness. Their options could be significantly affected by working conditions so it can be essential to investigate any potential sources of negligence or unsafe behaviors. Speaking with an attorney can help people understand their rights in terms of pursuing all available sources for compensation.