OSHA requires all machine parts that could cause injury to be guarded. Despite this, though, many employers in Georgia and across the U.S. fail to live up to the standards. As a result, more than 18,000 machine-related injuries occur each year in this country. Workers can have their limbs cut or crushed and even need amputation afterwards.
There are several types of machine guards, or materials that keep workers from coming into contact with hazardous areas of the machine. One simple type is the fixed guard, which has no moving parts and cannot itself be moved. Adjustable guards are also permanent fixtures but can be adjusted depending on the size of the material to be fed into the machine. Self-adjusting guards automatically adjust to the material.
Whatever type of guard employers choose to use, they should train their employees never to tamper with it. Employees should also be trained to inspect all machinery and power tools each time before use. In the event that machinery starts up through the release of hazardous energy, employees should follow the proper lockout/tagout procedures.
Certain employees who have undergone the right training can be designated to remove and adjust machine guards. These employees can also clean or lubricate machine parts when necessary.
Under workers’ compensation law, all employees who are injured on the job are eligible for benefits like wage replacement and reimbursement for all medical expenses. However, they are not guaranteed to receive these benefits. It may be wise, then, to hire a lawyer who may assist with the filing of the claim and any appeals should the employer deny payment.
While many lawyers will hand off a case to a case manager, Mr. Steven Morgan gives his personal attention to each one. He’s available to speak face to face with his clients. Call us today at 912-289-0640.