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OSHA’s Illinois office renews pledge to avoid workplace injury

On behalf of Jeffrey Frederick of Frederick & Hagle posted in Workers’ Compensation on Friday, May 30, 2014.

Earlier this month, the Illinois branch office of OSHA renewed their agreement with an electricians’ coalition, Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Trust, to improve the safety and training of workers in this field. The joint effort was first established in 2008, and it has been in place to help lessen the danger of a workplace injury or death. The partnership will include discussions, training and other proactive measures in order to prevent certain types of accidents for electricians.

The main thrust of the agreement is to address and prevent the possibility of a worker becoming a victim of rogue arc blasts and flashes. This occurs when an errant discharge of electricity travels between two conductors or toward the ground. If a worker is hit by such an energy dispersion, then the resulting injury could range from burns, hearing or nerve damage, or possibly heart attack and death.

These types of accidents can result when there is a build up of impurities on equipment or transmission lines, or from dropped equipment, which can trigger the unwanted release of energy. The best method to prevent these incidences is to shut down the power when work is being conducted. Short of that, workers must be trained regarding what equipment and clothing are appropriate when power cannot be turned off for work.

As part of the measures to improve safety, OSHA has updated some of the guidelines that may help workers remember to take precautions to prevent a serious workplace injury. In spite of all of the built-in safety protocols, the possibility still exists for an accident at work. Illinois employees who have suffered harm while on the job do have access to the workers’ compensation insurance program. This program enables injured workers to still provide for their families when they have been rendered unable to do so. For those who may have had difficulty having their claims processed in a timely fashion, there are resources that may be able to help them resolve the problem and receive any benefits to which they are entitled.

Source: safety.blr.com, “OSHA renews alliance to protect workers from arc flash“, , May 21, 2014

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