Injuries caused by rigging a common danger for shipyard injuries in North Carolina

A recently published document by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will help protect shipyard workers from rigging dangers.
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Our North Carolina workers’ compensation lawyers in Asheville, Charlotte and Greensboro know the dangers involved in the shipyard industry. Protecting employees from electrocution, falls or other hazards should be a top priority of all employers.

Safety and Health Injury Prevention Sheet (SHIPS) on rigging highlights rigging hazards when working in a shipyard. Rigging work involves using cables and ropes to secure sections of ships and ship parts before hoists and cranes move them. It is extremely important that this work is done properly. Loads that are not rigged correctly can create hazards like amputation, electric shock, falls and the potential of being crushed by a falling object.

Sections in the SHIPS document illustrate how shipyard workers can be vulnerable to traumatic injuries. Cases are described of how workers were killed or injured while engaged in rigging work. Helpful pictures describe unsafe work practices and show how these practices can cause a worker to be injured or killed. Employers have a responsibility to follow the suggestions, which are made to correct unsafe conditions in preventing future accidents.

The following are shipyard hazards that can cause serious or fatal injuries:

Fall Hazards can be created by:
-Uneven, obstructed, wet and slippery work surfaces.
-Unprotected deck holes, sides and bulkhead openings more than 5 feet.
-Portable ladders being improperly used.

Crushing and Struck-by Hazards can be created by:
-Defective or improperly inspected gear and equipment.
-Moving equipment and parts.
-Improperly rigged loads.
-Loads swinging out of control due to improper use of tag lines.
-Loads suspended or swung overhead.
-Worker being caught between a fixed object and a swinging load.

Electrical Hazards can be created by:
-Energized lines too close to hoisting and hauling equipment.
-Improperly grounded tools and equipment.
-Frayed or worn electric cables and defective electrical tools.

“Far too many workers in shipyard employment have suffered severe injuries or have died from preventable hazards,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels. “Employers who follow the guidance provided in this injury prevention sheet will create a safer, more healthful work environment for their workers.”

SHIPS training information is reader friendly making it very useful to workers and employers. Mini-posters are included in the information for quick referencing. Additional OSHA maritime-related information materials can be found on the OSHA Maritime Industry web page. It offers maritime workers and employers assistance and information to help them comply with OSHA standards to make the workplace safer. Many links are available regarding safety and health topics, OSHA Maritime Outreach Training Program for employers and workers and maritime standards and compliance assistance.

If you are dealing with a work accident in North Carolina or are dealing with a worker’s compensation or disability claim, contact the Lee Law Offices, P.A. today for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-887-1965.

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