What Is Considered An Unsafe Workplace?

Employment Law May 22nd, 2024
Unsafe workplace worker in hardhat outside on construction site Unsafe workplace worker in hardhat outside on construction site

In 2022, more than 500 workers died from work-related injuries in California. Millions more suffered a work-related injury or illness.

Even if you have a dangerous job, you are entitled to a safe workplace. If you have suffered an injury or illness due to an unsafe workplace, you may be able to collect extra worker’s compensation. If you have not struggled with such an injury or illness, but feel your workplace is unsafe, you can alert your employer – and take stronger action if they fail to fix the unsafe workplace.

An unsafe workplace is any environment in which an employee cannot perform their required duties due to dangerous conditions. In the eyes of the law, a workplace may be unsafe if the conditions put workers at an unreasonable risk.

State and federal laws require employers to maintain a safe workplace. Workers are allowed to report unsafe working conditions to their employers and to the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

5 Examples of an Unsafe Workplace

Here are just a few of the many examples of an unsafe workplace.

1. Lack of personal protection equipment

Workers wear personal protection equipment (PPE) to reduce their exposure to a variety of hazards. Helmets and other head protection protect workers’ heads from falling or flying objects, for example, and safety glasses can protect their eyes from metal shavings, blowing dust, dangerous liquids, and more.

2. Poorly-supervised or managed construction sites

Construction sites are dangerous places to work. In fact, the National Safety Council lists construction as the most dangerous industry, with the most workplace deaths.  If you bring up an unsafe situation and have negative repercussions, this could be a form of retaliation. A highly trained employment attorney, like ours at D.Law, can help you determine if that’s the case. 

3. Workspaces that are not up to code

Employees have a right to a workplace with ample lighting, safe electrical systems, and working equipment. The workspace should also be free of excessively loud noises, dangerously cluttered or confined spaces, greasy floors that pose a slip-and-fall hazard, and blocked fire exits.

4. Damaged or improperly-working machinery

Even when they are functioning well, working with machines can be dangerous. Working with broken machines can lead to severe cuts, known as lacerations, or even accidental amputation or worse. Defective or malfunctioning equipment can even be deadly. All aspects of running the broken machinery may be dangerous, from clearing jams to repairs and cleaning.

5. Untrained workers

Untrained workers may use machinery incorrectly and in ways that increase the risk of injury for all workers. Workers who have not received proper training may also be unaware of safety protocols and confused during emergencies.

Is Your Workplace Unsafe? Contact Your Employment Attorneys At D.Law!

You have a right to a safe workplace. If you feel that your workplace is unsafe under California law, contact or call D.Law. Our employment lawyers can help you exercise your rights for a safe workplace in the Bay Area, San Diego, Fresno, Los Angeles, and other California cities.

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