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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) strives to regulate employers and require compliance with its safety standards to keep construction workers safe on job sites. From fall protection to protocols for hand and power tools, various OSHA safety standards may apply at your job site. 

Despite the implementation of OSHA regulations, accidents still happen. If you were injured in a construction accident, the experienced personal injury attorneys at Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. are here to help.

What Is the Purpose of OSHA?

Congress created OSHA with the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 to ensure workers’ safety and healthful working conditions through training, education, and assistance. The Act covers most private-sector employers and workers and some in the public sector. 

How Does OSHA Help Employers Comply With Its Regulations?  

OSHA offers an On-site Consultation Program to provide small and medium-sized businesses with the free and confidential safety and occupational health advice and guidance they need. This program is separate from an OSHA inspection and allows employers to identify and examine potential hazards at their business location and improve the safety programs they already have. Through the program, employers qualify for a one-year exemption from routine OSHA inspections. Instead of OSHA issuing citations or penalties for any hazards, the employer must correct any job safety or health hazards.

How Does OSHA Prevent Accidents?

OSHA helps prevent accidents by imposing specific requirements that employers must meet to keep and maintain a safe working environment. In general, OSHA requires employers to:

  • Provide working conditions free of known dangers
  • Keep floors in work areas clean and dry
  • Select and provide required personal protective equipment (PPE) at no cost
  • Train workers about job hazards in their language

OSHA has standards for many aspects of the work performed or equipment used at construction sites. For example, because falls are a common cause of work-related injuries, OSHA has specific mandates concerning fall protection. OSHA requires employers to set up and maintain the workplace to prevent employees from falling off overhead platforms or into holes in the floor.

Examples of OSHA requirements related to falls include requiring that fall protection be provided at specific elevations (four feet in general industry workplaces) and requiring fall protection if workers are working above dangerous machinery and equipment, regardless of the potential fall distance.

Further, employers are required to provide the following safeguards to prevent employees from being injured from falls:

  • Guard every floor hole
  • Provide a guard rail and toe-board around elevated open-sided platforms and floors
  • Provide guardrails and toe-boards to prevent falls into dangerous machines and equipment
  • Offer appropriate fall protection equipment necessary for the job, such as safety harnesses, nets, and handrails

Falls are just one construction site accident OSHA works hard to prevent. Unfortunately, workers can still be injured on job sites despite OSHA regulations and efforts to enforce compliance.

Can I File a Lawsuit If I’m Injured on a Construction Site?

Yes. If you were hurt on the job, you could be entitled to file a lawsuit related to your injuries and financial losses. Because not all construction workers are covered by workers’ comp, a civil lawsuit might be appropriate to hold the at-fault party accountable and obtain the money you need to pay your medical expenses and cover your lost wages.

If you are injured on a construction site, contact an experienced North Dakota personal injury attorney as soon as possible. They will evaluate the potential causes of action you can pursue to seek the compensation you need after an accident.

Contact Our Minot & Grand Forks Construction Accident Attorney Today

At Pringle & Herigstad, P.C., we have the legal knowledge and skill to handle the most complex construction site accident cases. From investigating the incident to gathering the necessary evidence to support your case to taking the matter to court if necessary, we will work hard to develop a strong case to seek your maximum compensation. Contact us today to get started with a complimentary case review with a seasoned personal injury lawyer.

Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. is committed to supporting individuals in North Dakota, including Grand Forks and Minot, as well as the surrounding areas. Our dedicated team is here to provide legal assistance and guidance to those facing the complex challenges that arise from these incidents.