There are over 700,000 eye injuries that occur on the job each year. However, there are ways that workers in Florida and throughout the country can keep their eyesight intact. For instance, it is good to keep exposure to blue light to a minimum as it can help workers avoid digital eyestrain syndrome. This is a condition that is common among those who use a computer or similar device for several hours each day.
Construction workers in Florida may be exposed to particularly high levels of silica dust when chipping and crushing concrete and other materials. In some cases, the level of exposure could rise to over 10 times the permitted amount according to federal OSHA workplace safety regulations, one study indicates. Researchers collected samples from the breathing zones of 51 workers at demolition, bridge repair and crushing job sites in the construction industry. They also collected 33 samples from nearby areas to measure the distribution of silica dust particles in the surrounding environment.
Florida construction workers may be worried about their safety on the job, especially if they work as contractors rather than employees of the construction firm leading the project. This is particularly true for workers dealing with electricity. One study by the National Fire Protection Association found that 13 percent of all deaths by electrocution were suffered by contract workers. Contract workers are employed by another firm but brought in to participate in a project as subcontractors, or they operate as self-employed independent contractors. Contract workers have always been a part of the construction industry, but their employment in this area has become more common in recent years.
In Florida and across the United States, the holiday shopping season puts many pressures on retail workers. At a time when the unemployment rate is at historic low levels, many retail employers respond to the increased business activity by offering workers overtime pay and bonuses in exchange for longer hours and increased productivity, two factors that result in greater stress.
Florida employees in a number of different industries may increasingly find themselves working alongside robots. As the use of robots in the workplace grows, so does the likelihood that humans may be injured as a result of working with them. Robots have actually been in the workplace for longer than many people may realize. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration created its first safety guidelines for working with robotics in 1987.
OHSA says that it will focus more on enforcing regulations related to trenching and excavation. This is according to a recent update to its National Emphasis Program (NEP). Between 2011 and 2016, 130 workers died while doing this type of work. Of those deaths, 80 percent came from workers in the private sector. Almost half of those deaths occurred between 2015 and 2016 alone, according to OSHA. Florida employers and others will receive guidance from OSHA in complying with the standard.
The Office of the Inspector General has released an audit report saying that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is not doing enough to gather information on workplace injuries and fatalities in Pennsylvania and other states. OSHA has also not been consistent in issuing citations to organizations that fail to meet filing requirements. OIG found that there was a lack of training and guidance regarding how to prevent and detect under reporting of employee injuries.
"Handle with care" is a good rule of thumb to follow in any workplace. It is especially important for Florida workers who find themselves handling hazardous materials in the course of their workday.
International health agencies estimate that 105,000 to 110,000 deaths occur every year across the world due to asbestos exposure. However, a recent study from the International Commission of Occupational Health shows that the reality could be even worse. Florida residents should know that exposure to this mineral causes more than just mesothelioma; in fact, it's more likely to cause lung cancer.
For some people in Florida, the idea of a dangerous job may evoke images of law enforcement officers and firefighters. After all, danger is at the very heart of these occupations. In terms of fatal injury rates, however, the most hazardous jobs in the United States are in the logging, fishing and aviation industries.