Raleigh, NC (PressExposure) January 21, 2009 -- The new Obama administration is expected to change OSHA and other workplace safety laws making it more worker-friendly, a positive move that many unions and workers deserve. The potential changes would come at a time when workplace deaths in North Carolina are rising. According to figures released by the state Department of Labor last week, there were 59 work-related deaths in 2008, compared with 45 the previous year.
The changes to OSHA will mean more regulation and larger fines for companies providing hazardous conditions or trying to under-report or hide workplace injuries. The Charlotte Observer reported that inspections to poultry plants, an industry exposed to repetitive motion injuries, inspections have dropped to their lowest levels in fifteen years. They further reported that OSHA staff has declined by 25% since 1980. New York times reported a recent crane collapse in New York that killed 6 workers, investigators found that the crew used only half the number of protective nylon strings that were needed to hold up a steel brace that connected the crane to the tower. All of the above statistics present a scary picture about workplace safety, David Vtipil, co-founder of the leading North Carolina Workplace Safety Law Practice at http://www.AttorneysNC.com , commented - âWorkplace safety took a backseat under the Bush administration. There were hardly any new laws written to protect workers from the new risks that surface on a regular basis at the workplace. The Obama administration, under Hilda Solis, promises to provide better protection to workers and we hope that they will deliver on it. Workers and employers everywhere should take a note of these changes.â
Federal OSHA governs workplace safety in about half of the states in the US, whereas the states take care of that job in the other half â including North Carolina. David points out âWe are unsure what the extent of the changes will be, considering that North Carolina is not directly governed by Federal OSHA, but we are confident that it will be positive. For companies as well as individuals, you need people that care about our state and are knowledgeable about the latest laws and strategies to get the compensation you deserve.â For more information about workplace safety rules including industrial accidents and workersâ compensation FAQâs, check out their site at http://attorneysnc.com/industrial_accidents.html.