Workers’ safety is important no matter where you work, and state safety agencies bear great responsibility for ensuring that workers in every job sector remain safe. When an employee suffers an injury or dies on the job, these agencies investigate the scene of the injury to identify any safety violations on the part of the employer. When they do find safety violations, they have the power to levy fines against the employer, such as in a recent case involving a California ski resort.

While a ski resort may be a fun adventure spot for tourists, it can pose serious dangers to the workers who maintain the slopes. Tragically, a man who was working to maintain ski slopes died in a controlled demolition accident in January of 2017. After investigating, Cal/OSHA determined that the accident involved two serious safety violations that contributed to the man’s death.

According to the report, the resort did not enforce hang cord entanglement safety procedures when using explosives to control avalanches. Also, the resort failed to enforce safety regulations that all members of a blast crew must maintain some form of visual contact with other care members at all times. The fines for these safety failures total about $20,000.

Employers are responsible for ensuring that proper safety procedures keep employees from these kinds of situations. It is heartbreaking to think that a man lost his life because of this type of employer negligence. If you believe that your employer is not maintaining proper safety procedures in your workplace, you can consult with an attorney about ways to keep yourself and others safe in the workplace.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “Squaw Valley resort fined $20,000 after avalanche control explosion that killed ski patroller,” Joseph Serna, Aug. 11, 2017