While the number of workplace injuries in North Carolina and across the country is steadily decreasing, thousands of workers still die from preventable accidents. Studies have shown that certain groups like Latino workers are particularly at risk. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration is responsible for helping businesses maintain a safe workplace. However, the numbers show that OSHA doesn’t have nearly enough resources to protect employees as well as it could.
In total, there are fewer than 2,000 OSHA inspectors operating across the United States, but those inspectors are responsible for over 147 million employees. It’s impossible for anyone to handle that kind of workload. According to the International Labor Organization, the United States should have at least 14,000 inspectors to deal with safety concerns and inspect facilities on a regular basis.
With the organization’s current resources, it would take OSHA 92 years to investigate all workplaces and make the necessary changes. Since OSHA is so understaffed, many safety issues go unreported, which can result in accidents and fatalities. Some workers are killed on the job while others are injured and have to file for workers’ comp. Some employees are forced to leave the workforce because of permanent disability.
Many businesses fail to provide safe working conditions. Some businesses ignore safety laws, and others push their employees well beyond the limit. As a result, the majority of workplace accidents are completely preventable.
Most workers file for workers’ compensation after suffering an injury. However, if their employer refuses to pay out the benefits, the employee might wish to hire an attorney to help them take the case to court.