When you go to work, you expect that your employer will provide you with a safe place to do your job. But this does not always happen, and your workplace may expose you to hazards that have the potential to result in serious injury or death.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, it is illegal for your employer to maintain a workplace with hazards likely to cause injury or death under the General Duty Clause. In return, as an employee, you must comply with all workplace rules designed to protect your safety and health.
Qualifications for a hazard
For your employer to violate the General Duty Clause, several elements must be present. First, your employer must fail to keep your workplace free of a hazard. Second, the hazard must be recognizable. Third, the hazard must be likely to cause serious injury or death. And fourth, a feasible method for correcting the hazard must exist.
Examples of General Duty Clause violations
There are many ways an employer can violate the General Duty Clause and fail to maintain a safe workplace. For example, combustible dust hazards, ergonomic hazards, not providing personal protection equipment, improperly storing chemicals and not inspecting or maintaining boilers are all examples of General Duty Clause violations.
If you sustain injuries while on the job due to a workplace hazard, you could be eligible for benefits under the workers’ compensation system to help with your recovery. These benefits may include wage loss benefits, medical care benefits and rehabilitation benefits to help you eventually return to your job.