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What to know about amputation in manufacturing

On Behalf of | Mar 2, 2021 | Workers' Compensation |

In 2018, 5,920 workers suffered an amputation injury, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This means that if you work in the manufacturing industry, you will be aware of the risk of amputation injuries. You might even know a former colleague who lost a limb at work.

As a result, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (0SHA) made several updates to its program designed to identify and reduce or eliminate amputation injuries in the workplace. The changes affect inspection procedures and incident recording procedures.

While these changes are essential in understanding why accidents happen, preventing amputation incidents requires the same basic steps as it always has:

  • Physical barriers: Machines should be equipped with suitable safeguards to prevent someone accidentally coming into contact with a moving part.
  • Inspections: Employers must ensure regular inspections of machinery.
  • Tag outs and lockouts: Tagouts tell other people not to turn the power back on. Lockouts prevent them from doing so and are therefore much safer. Workers should use them in preference to tag outs where possible. They are essential during maintenance or cleaning.
  • Taking care during a power cut: It can be easy to forget a machine is switched on during a power outage. Any device that automatically turns back on with the power supply’s return presents a grave danger to workers.
  • Training: This is key to all workplace safety.

Obviously amputation is an extremely bad workplace injury, but any workplace injury can be compensable.  Solomon Law Firm has been successfully dedicated to helping injured workers for 40 years.

Employers must provide their employees with a safe workplace environment. Yet, this is not just about making rules. Many incidents go unreported because people fear their boss’s reaction. They might fear dismissal or some other punishment if they admit the truth. A company culture encouraging employees to report errors or near misses reduces the chance an amputation injury happens. Workers’ compensation insurance can make things better if you lose a limb, but it does not address the problem’s cause.