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Prolonged full body vibration may cause injury

Missouri residents may be interested in knowing what a study found about the effect of farm machinery on the health of the workers who use them. The study showed that within two hours of operation, 30 percent of the tested equipment reached what the European Union refers to as "action level," signifying a risk to the operator's health.

These tests were done on 112 pieces of farm machinery. This included things like combines, all-terrain vehicles, tractors, forklifts and skid loaders. Sensors were attached to the floors and to the seats of these vehicles. The sensors on the floors made it possible for researchers to determine how good of a job the seats did at minimizing vibration levels. The study also looked at the posture of the individuals who participated in the study while on the machines.

Construction workers at high risk for elevator accidents

If you work construction in Missouri, you likely work at many job sites where the elevator has yet to be fully installed and working. If the building in which you are working contains multiple stories, this leaves you at high risk for sustaining an elevator-related injury or even dying in an elevator accident.

Per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, America sees over 17,000 elevator accidents per year, and 31 people die in them, approximately half of whom are construction workers. In fact, elevator accidents account for a full one-third of all construction fatalities.

Tesla cited by OSHA more than all of its competitors combined

New vehicle buyers in Missouri and around the country who purchase Tesla vehicles might rave about the carmaker, but the 15,000 people who work at the company's huge Freemont manufacturing plant may not be as complimentary. This is because Tesla racked up more Occupational Safety and Health Administration violations between 2014 and 2018 than its 10 largest competitors combined.

Figures gathered by the business magazine and website Forbes reveal that Tesla has been cited 54 times and fined $236,730 by OSHA during the last four years. Regarding the high number of violations, the company's CEO Elon Musk referred to California OSHA as the nation's strictest government safety organization. According to the Forbes analysis, Ford's Missouri assembly plant was the second most cited automobile manufacturing facility with 29 violations that led to fines totaling $29,918.

Recording the details after a car crash

After getting hit by a vehicle, it can be difficult to keep in mind all of the best practices to document the incident. Still, staying calm and taking stock of the situation can be important not only for immediate needs but also for dealing with insurance companies and Missouri authorities. Car accidents can cause serious property damage as well as major injuries that can keep people out of work or require hospitalization. By keeping some key tips in mind, a crash victim can help to support their recollection of the incident.

A victim will need to tell their story to insurance adjusters, police and potentially lawyers. That's why it's important to carefully take in information at a crash scene. Of course, dealing with medical emergencies is the most important issue. Calling 911 can summon emergency aid to the scene, including police and emergency medical personnel. In general, it is best to leave the car accident scene as it is, but in some places it can be dangerous to do so. When safety is an issue, it's wise to move the involved vehicles to the side of the road and wait for the police to arrive.

Causes of car accidents and their influence on liability

Drivers in Missouri have control over many factors when they get behind the wheel. They can choose to avoid distractions, stay sober, maintain their vehicles and obey traffic laws. Issues like the bad decisions of other drivers or defective auto parts, however, are beyond an individual's control. When crashes happen, the police and insurance adjusters will strive to determine what caused the accident and who bears responsibility.

Human error accounts for many car accidents. Even someone with good intentions might simply make a mistake and therefore face liability. Choosing to drive while engaging in distracting behaviors, however, represents a disregard for safety and could result in financial responsibility for accident victims. Using smartphones, eating, putting on makeup and adjusting a radio are known to impact a person's ability to monitor traffic.

Cold temperatures can threaten workers with hypothermia

Winter brings cold temperatures to parts of Missouri, and people in many occupations could experience symptoms of cold stress. Outdoor workers in industries such as construction and agriculture face the cold weather head on, but risks could affect indoor workers as well. People who labor in cold storage areas, wet conditions or in workplaces without heat could succumb to cold stress, which ultimately leads to hypothermia.

Dropping internal body temperatures reduce dexterity and sometimes cause slurred speech. Symptoms become severe when the body temperature falls to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. A person with a core temperature down to 78 degrees faces possible brain damage and death.

Drowsiness a public safety risk in ridesharing industry

Ridesharing drivers in Missouri may feel encouraged to work extended hours because of the low fare and salary incentives, but they will want to be careful about exceeding their safety limits. A position statement from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine has brought some needed attention to the risk of sleep deprivation among people in the industry.

Many of them drive during the early mornings and late into the night after a long period of wakefulness, which only increases the chances of driving drowsy. Since in most cases they are independent contractors, they do not get screened for conditions like obstructive sleep apnea that will compound those chances.

Reducing scaffolding accidents at construction sites

Many of the accidents that occur at construction sites in Missouri involve scaffolding. In fact, scaffolding accidents collectively cost U.S. employers $90 million annually in lost work days due to related injuries. Improper scaffolding consistently ranks as one of the top OSHA violations. It's also estimated that more than 2 million construction workers, representing nearly 70 percent of the construction industry, frequently perform work involving scaffolding. This is why OSHA has established scaffolding-related guidelines to help improve worker safety when scaffolding is used.

According to OSHA, the first step an employer can take to reduce workers' compensation claims related to scaffolding accidents is to firmly secure it. Scaffolding must be accessible by ladders and stairwells, placed 10 feet away from power lines and able to support its own weight along with four times its maximum load capacity without displacement or settling. The agency also prohibits the use of barrels, concrete blocks and other unstable objects to support scaffolds or planks. Also, a competent person must supervise scaffolding dismantling and movement.

WHO report finds flaws in global road safety laws

Traffic crashes are not just a problem in Missouri. In fact, they are the eighth leading reason for death in the whole world, according to the World Health Organization. They are also globally the leading cause of death among people 5 to 29 years old. The 2018 Global Status Report on Road Safety, released in December by WHO, analyzed the road safety laws of 175 countries and found many of them wanting.

Traffic-related death rates are especially high in low-income countries, where people run triple the risk for a fatal traffic crash compared to those in high-income countries. Africa, with 26.6 deaths per 100,000 people, and Southeast Asia, with 20.7 deaths, see the highest numbers.

3 signs you cannot trust the company doctor

All companies should have a policy in place stating what should happen when a worker sustains an injury on the job. It is vital for certain industries in particular to have such a policy. In 2017, the jobs with the highest rates of workplace injuries were laborers, truck drivers and janitors. 

Many companies will have employees go to a company-specified doctor. You should listen to this doctor's advice, but it is also a good idea to seek a second opinion if the doctor tells you anything you are skeptical of. There are signs a company doctor may not have your best interests at heart, so watch out when he or she does the following. 

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