Any job comes with risk, and the construction industry has more than most. Your employer must ensure that those risks do not result in injuries.
While employers know they are responsible for their workers’ safety, some do not take it seriously. They may fill in the safety assessment forms only because they have to, not because they want to. They may half-heartedly share information with you, or provide a bit of less-than-thorough training, merely to avoid the fines that could apply if they do not.
What is a safety culture?
For a company to operate safely, they need to ensure that safety is a priority and that everyone understands that and is on board with it. Here are some things your employer needs to do to ensure that your company is a safe place to work:
- Act when someone breaks the rules: If your employer says the speed limit on site is five miles per hour, they need to ensure that all vehicles adhere to it. If a delivery driver or the boss’s partner refuses to comply, they need to remove them from the site. The rules must apply to everyone.
- Listen to workers: You attend a safety briefing, and your boss tells you how important safety is to the company and that their door is always open if anyone has any concerns they want to discuss. Yet, when you knock on your manager’s door to tell them the scaffolding is set up wrong, they tell you that the guy in charge has been erecting scaffolding for years without a problem, and you should shut up and get back to work.
- Encourage the reporting of mistakes: Some people will say they saw it coming when an accident happens. They may have had a similar event happen to them. They might have escaped without injury. If people are too afraid to report near misses, the company loses the chance to learn from the experience.
If you are injured at work because your employer only pays lip service to safety, they may try to deny or limit your compensation. Understanding how Ohio worker’s compensation works will be essential to get the total amount you are entitled to.