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Jacksonville Legal Issues Blog

Three safety tips for restaurant workers

If you have a food service job in North Carolina, it is crucial for you to know the potential dangers in your workplace. Wet floors, hot materials, heavy objects and overworking can all lead to injuries in a restaurant. Whether you work in a fast food restaurant, coffee shop or five-star establishment, you must be diligent in staying safe. 

While it is the primary duty of your employer to provide training and mitigate hazards, you can do some things on your own to reduce your chances of sustaining an injury at your job. Here are some essential safety tips for restaurant workers to prevent injuries:

Inspection blitz finds driver and truck violations

In June, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance held its International Roadcheck inspection blitz. During that time, there were 11,897 taken off of the road in addition to 2,664 drivers. Of the inspections that were conducted, 45,400 were the Level I variety. For drivers, the most common reason why they were taken out of service was for hours-of-service violations. Other top reasons included not having the right type of drivers license and false record of duty status.

Other issues that resulted in drivers been taken off the road were being impaired by drugs or alcohol or having an expired license. For trucks that were taken off of the road, the most common violations were related to brakes, brake systems and issues with the truck's tires and wheels. They were also ordered off the road because of lighting, steering and exhaust problems.

The impact of reality-based elements in teen drivers' education

Interactive, reality-based elements could do a lot to boost teen driver education courses. This is the conclusion of a Baylor University study, which analyzed the effect of a supplemental drivers' education program on teens' risk awareness and driving behavior. Parents of teens in North Carolina may want to learn more about the program.

The Texas Reality Education for Drivers program is a one-day, six-hour class set in a hospital. While it incorporates traditional elements like lectures, videos and discussions, these are not at the center of the program. Teens are taken on guided tours through the hospital's emergency rooms, ICU and morgue and even converse with health care staffers about their experiences treating crash victims.

Roundabouts can affect pedestrian safety

Pedestrians in North Carolina may choose to walk for a number of reasons, including health, lack of a vehicle or even to reduce their carbon footprints. When an adult walks instead of drives to their destination, they will need to take care to remain safe while on the road.

Unfortunately, for some pedestrians, walking can be a dangerous activity. There are many motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians each year, which means that both motorists and pedestrians need to take care to prevent accidents while on the road.

How to help the SSDI application process move faster

When North Carolina residents apply for Social Security Disability Insurance, they may find that the process moves too slowly. People who apply for benefits often need the support urgently, so the delays and lags in the process can be difficult to deal with. There is often little a person can do to speed up the pace of an application, but there are a few things to keep in mind.

People who have not yet filed their claim but have an appointment for an SSDI benefits application interview can help to reduce processing time by bringing all of the information that could be required by the claims representative. These materials can include the applicant's birth certificate, social security card, life insurance information, investment details, photo identification, proof of marriage or divorce and any record of past military service. Applicants can also bring a list of all of their current medications and dosages, a written history of their employment experience over the past 15 years and a list of all of their doctors and sources of treatment.

Construction workers face the risk of scaffold injuries

Construction workers in North Carolina may deal with a number of job-related hazards on a daily basis. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 65 percent of workers in the construction industry frequently work at heights on scaffolds. This also means that some of the most common accidents suffered by construction workers involve scaffolds and related equipment, like lifts, ladders and hoists. Because they take place from heights, the injuries caused by scaffolding accidents can be severe and life-changing.

While accidents can happen even on generally safe scaffolding equipment, workplace injuries are more likely when defective, unsafe or improperly used equipment is involved. In addition, when employers fail to provide training on safety or fall-prevention equipment, workers may be more likely to suffer serious injuries. Construction workers can also face harm from falling objects above them as they have little area to escape the impact. Employers have a responsibility to comply with OSHA regulations for worker safety when using scaffolding and other equipment at heights.

11 rules for safe chemical handling in North Carolina

Chemical handlers and their employers can consider the following safety rules, leaving out some and adding any of their own depending on the needs of their workplace. The first rule is to follow all established procedures. Employers therefore have to ensure proper training. Secondly, employers should have emergency procedures in place, such as for evacuation and incident reporting.

Workers should have personal protective equipment that's appropriate for the workplace, such as gloves or respirators, and not worn or damaged. Before they start working, employees are encouraged to think about what could go wrong. Keeping the work area clean is also essential. Cleaning work surfaces at least once during every shift can prevent contamination.

Study rates the worst states for aggressive driving

If you regularly encounter rude drivers who speed and swerve between lanes to avoid the next red light, you are not alone. Countless other drivers in North Carolina find it annoying, as well as frightening, to deal with aggressive drivers on a daily basis. You may also feel inclined to react to a rude driver in kind, although this wouldn’t be wise. Aggressive driving can quickly escalate into road rage.

While it’s not uncommon to share the road with rude and reckless drivers, it may surprise you to learn that North Carolina is one of the top states to experience this type of driving behavior. According to a study by GasBuddy, North Carolina ranked fifth in the nation for aggressive drivers. The most common action reported was hard braking, followed by speeding.

Five safety tips for machine workers and their employers

Anyone in North Carolina who has to work around small or heavy-duty machinery should know about the dangers. Improper use of machinery, as well as its poor maintenance, can result in serious and sometimes fatal injuries. Both employees and employers will want to consider the five safety tips given below to prevent such incidents from occurring.

Machine-related injuries often arise from a lack of protective guarding. Saws, lathes and any machines with moving parts should have the appropriate form of guarding on them. Examples include barrier guards, light curtains and two-hand controls, which keep the operators' hands away from unsafe zones. With these, workers can better avoid burns and eye injuries from sparks and flying chips.

Struck-by injuries and how to prevent them

Among OSHA's Construction Focus Four (the four hazards that together cause the majority of fatalities at construction sites) is the struck-by object. Struck-by accidents constitute the widest range of threats, covering objects that fly, fall, swing or roll, so North Carolina workers will want to know how to prevent them.

The first step is to understand the nature of each hazard. Objects can separate from machinery or tools and become airborne. Improperly operated cranes can cause objects to swing. Workers can be struck by sliding objects or by vehicles. Falling object hazards are self-explanatory, though they do not cover collapsing structures and materials.

The Law Offices of John Drew Warlick, P.A. - Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorneys

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Jacksonville, NC 28540

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