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July 2014 Archives

Pennsylvania Supreme Court rules on workers' comp case

Pennsylvania's Supreme Court recently reaffirmed a decision that a man who pleaded the Fifth in relation to questions about his status as an immigrant was eligible for workers' compensation benefits. In 2008, the man in question was injured on the job, and a doctor limited the man to lifting no more than 15 pounds as well as telling him to avoid tasks that involved stretching, bending or reaching.

Could technology reduce workplace accidents in Pennsylvania?

Working in the oil and gas industry can expose workers to risks that they would not face in other fields. However, an Australian company is looking to reduce the number of accidents on the job by measuring how tired a worker may be. The worker wears a pair of glasses that would transmit his or her level of drowsiness to supervisors who can then assess that person's chances of being involved in a potentially dangerous situation.

Fatal accident followed removal of sugar hopper safety device

A horrific accident that occurred at a Pennsylvania sugar plant in February 2013 illustrates current problems in some parts of the temporary services industry. A 50-year-old temp working at the CSC Sugar plant in Fairless Hills was smothered while standing inside a sugar hopper breaking up clumps with a shovel. Investigators recently found unsettling information showing that only 13 days prior, a plant manager had ordered the removal of a filter that eliminated clumping in the interest of speeding up processing. The manager later claimed to OSHA that he was unaware of the screen's removal.

Electrocuted worker's parents sue contractors and homeowners

A Pennsylvania man was electrocuted on April 27, 2013, while working as an independent contractor at a home. According to a legal journal posting on July 1, his surviving family members are now seeking damages from the parties involved in enabling him to work at the premises where he died. His estate is represented by his mother, who has joined his father in seeking damages of $50,000 for each of 20 counts against four electrical contractors and the homeowners. The damages include pecuniary losses, funeral expenses, loss of comfort, care and potential contributions from the victim to the family.

Despite increased risk, dangerous jobs may not pay much higher

Pennsylvania workers may be interested in a recent article that looked at five of the most dangerous jobs and examined whether their income was higher due to the danger involved. As it turns out, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most of these high-risk occupations do not command an income premium.

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