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Burlington Personal Injury Law Blog

Machine guarding in plants and OSHA regulations

Plant workers in New Jersey may be protected from hazardous machinery by a number of different types of guards. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires such equipment as portable power tools, shears, power presses and milling machines to have guards. Among the types of guards that protect workers are two-handed tripping devices and barrier guards.

Despite OSHA regulations, accidents still happen, and workers are still injured. A common reason for lack of guards is that they are sometimes removed when repairs are being done and never replaced. Fans are often outdated. Along with blades, they can harm a worker if unguarded. If a pulley snags a worker's clothing, the worker could be yanked into machinery. To prevent these types of accidents, other safety measures in addition to guards include keeping machinery maintained, making sure there is a red emergency stop button, and ensuring that electrical equipment that could be a fire hazard is kept away from combustibles.

AFL-CIO raises awareness of workplace illness, death rates

Workers in New Jersey and across the U.S. are dying and being injured at alarming rates. The AFL-CIO published its annual report on workplace fatalities, entitled "Death on the Job: The Toll of Neglect," during this year's Workers' Memorial Week, which took place from April 22 to 29. The report states that there were 5,147 such fatalities in 2017. While this is an improvement from the 5,190 who died in 2016, it is still higher than 2015's death toll of 4,836.

The three leading causes of death among workers were transportation accidents; slip, trip and fall incidents; and workplace violence. The first accounted for 2,077 deaths in 2017, the second for 887 and the third for 807. Workplace violence also led to some 29,000 injury cases where workers in the private industry lost time from work.

How can you avoid a motorcycle crash?

It's summer, and that means it's time to put some miles on your motorcycle again. You're thrilled. You had to keep it in the garage for far too long. You're excited to get out there and hit the open road.

When you first started riding, you worried about crashing. Who doesn't? However, it's now been five years, and you have never gotten involved in a single wreck. You have stopped worrying about it, and now you actually wonder if these accidents get more hype than they deserve.

NIOSH issues fact sheet to help prevent construction worker falls

Construction workers in New Jersey and around the country are at high risk for falls. Falls are the number one cause of death in the construction industry with an average of 310 fatal falls and 10,350 serious injuries every year, according to information released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In an effort to reduce these numbers, NIOSH has recently put out a fact sheet for construction employers.

Roof, ladder and scaffolding safety are the subjects of the fact sheet. Roof workers should wear appropriate fall protection equipment, use the buddy system and be properly trained. Fall arrest systems should use the correct anchorage. Employers must additionally monitor the weather for high winds and other dangers.

Even light rain increases the chances of a fatal accident

The chances of being involved in a deadly car accident in New Jersey and around the country increase greatly in poor weather, and even rain that would prompt few drivers to switch on their windshield wipers poses a significant danger. These were among the conclusions drawn by a team of researchers who studied more than 125,000 fatal crashes that took place between 2006 and 2011 and then published their findings earlier this year.

Instead of scrutinizing local weather reports to determine how much rain, ice, and snow played a role in causing the car accidents studied, the research team gathered high-resolution radar images to find out the weather conditions at the exact time and place the crashes occurred. After analyzing this information, they discovered that light rain made fatal accidents 27 percent more likely to occur and heavy rain increased the odds by 75 percent.

How AI could improve construction site safety

Many New Jersey residents are aware of the fact that working in construction is dangerous. In fact, about 14 workers die on construction jobs every day. Struck-by deaths are on the rise. This underscores the importance of finding ways to make work sites safer.

Some are looking to artificial intelligence solutions and machine learning to reduce workplace hazards and provide managers with more control over construction sites. This leads to increased visibility. About 40 percent of construction deaths are the result of surprise injuries, like falls. While there may not be any way to completely eliminate this risk, when AI software is used, cameras provide real-time footage that allows construction managers to anticipate dangers and reduce workplace accidents.

Parents, learn about drain entrapment to keep kids safer

Spring has sprung in New Jersey, and with the warmer temperatures, soon it will once again be time to head down the shore. This time-honored tradition continues at shore houses and beachside motels up and down the coast.

But there are inherent dangers in certain activities in and around water. Of course, people know and understand that the ocean surf and undertow can turn deadly at any time. But far fewer understand the consequences that can result from suction entrapment in a pool or spa.

Employees need to protect their eyesight at Work

In many New Jersey workplaces, "begin with safe eyes, finish with safe eyes" is a well-known phrase regarding eye safety. When a person loses their eyesight, life changes dramatically. Therefore, people should do everything possible to ensure that their eyes are completely safe in the workplace. Every day, more than 2,000 American employees incur eye injuries at work.

More than 700,000 eye injuries take place each year. As a result, roughly a million American workers have incurred work-related problems with their eyesight. Eyesight problems cost employers more than $934 million per year due to losing good workers and paying for medical expenses. Employees can face eye injuries while working indoors and outdoors. Furthermore, a worker employed in any occupation risks having a serious eye injury. Employees also risk injuring their eyes when they stare at their computer screens all day.

Defective AEB puts owners of 2017-2018 Nissan Rogues at risk

More than 800,000 2017-2018 Nissan Rogues in New Jersey and across the US have been found to have defective automatic emergency braking systems. This safety feature, which is meant to brake for drivers when faced with stationary or slow-moving objects, will activate for no reason at all, sometimes abruptly and forcefully, putting both drivers and anyone behind them at risk for a crash.

The Center for Auto Safety, a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization, has filed a petition with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asking for a formal investigation into the matter. NHTSA's database is full of complaints from Nissan Rogue owners regarding their AEB feature. Many drivers have shut off the feature, so they are not reaping any safety benefits from it.

Pickup passengers more likely than drivers to get hurt or die

Since 2017, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has been complementing its driver-side crash tests with the testing of passenger sides. Focusing on newer two-row pickup trucks, the IIHS has found a discrepancy between driver safety and passenger safety of which New Jersey residents should be aware.

After crash-testing 10 pickups, the IIHS rated the driver-side performance as "good" for all but two vehicles, the Toyota Tundra and the Nissan Frontier. However, these two vehicles received the rating of "marginal," not the lowest one of "poor." The results were drastically different for passenger-side performance.

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