OSHA forced to focus on work accident inquiries, not prevention

Jul 17 2014

When someone is injured on the job, in many cases people will look for a person to blame. Perhaps it was the injured person who caused the workplace accident, or maybe it was the employer at fault or maybe it was a safety regulation failure.

Of course it’s important to understand why accidents happen and to know if we can improve the workplace in order to prevent future injuries. But as far as Colorado workers’ compensation benefits are concerned, it doesn’t matter who is at fault for the injury. If it happened at work, the employee should be covered by workers’ comp.

It’s part of the mission of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration to understand why workplace accidents happen and how they can be prevented. 

Unfortunately, OSHA doesn’t receive nearly the funding it needs to inspect all workplaces and find all possible safety and health regulation violations. Present levels of funding dictate that the agency spends much of its time and resources investigating events that have already happened, rather than working to prevent future accidents.

The director of regulatory policy for the nonprofit Center for Effective Government in Washington, D.C. said it would take OSHA at least a century to visit every work facility they’re tasked with inspecting.

Because workers are going to be hurt on the job before those 100 years pass by, it’s important to know that anyone injured in the workplace should be approved for workers’ comp. For those turned down, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you navigate the appeals process.

Source: Dayton Daily News, “OSHA focuses more on accident response, hazards than prevention,” Chelsey Levingston, July 9, 2014