Many California workers encounter hazards in a typical workday. Those who work with heavy machinery or equipment are often at risk for injury, which is one of many reasons it is imperative that employers provide proper training and safety equipment to help keep workers safe. A recent tragedy occurred in Lincoln that led to Sierra Pacific Industries facing a substantial fine for safety violations.
The company failed to follow safety procedures for a compressor
A worker was setting up an air compressor when a terrible accident occurred. A pipeline exploded, which caused an onslaught of shrapnel to become projectiles in the surrounding area. Two workers were hit with the flying debris. One of the workers suffered injuries; the other, sadly, did not survive the incident.
Cal-OSHA investigated the accident
The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health investigated the accident. Investigators determined that numerous safety violations had occurred prior to the worker setting up the air compressor. The violations included failure to ensure that workers were under proper supervision, failure to establish energy control within the pipeline and operating the equipment under conditions of stress. The total fines issued to the company amount to more than $100,000.
Litigation often follows cases like this
When a California workplace accident results in injury or death, it sometimes leads to litigation in a civil court. This is typically in addition to any workers’ compensation benefits that apply. In certain circumstances, such as when injuries have occurred as a result of faulty equipment or similar issues, it may be possible to file a third-party lawsuit to seek financial recovery for damages. The plaintiff in such a case is tasked with presenting evidence that proves that the defendant was negligent and directly responsible for the damages that occurred.