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Preventing Violence on the Job

Posted on in Personal Injury

violence on the job, workplace accidents, San Jose workers’ compensation and personal injury attorney,  work-related violence, workplace violenceOn-the-job injuries are generally associated with workplace accidents, such as slips and falls or strains that occur due to lifting heavy objects. Unfortunately for workers in a variety of fields, acts of violence on the part of customers or coworkers have become an increasing commonly concern. These incidents can end up being severe and potentially deadly, and it is important for employees to be aware of the risks.

Workplace Violence

Workplace violence is not something that occurs infrequently, nor are these incidents random cases which are sensationalized by the media.The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that roughly two million Americans are victims of violent attacks by clients or other employees each year, making it one of the leading causes of job-related death.

Violence is a growing concern across the country and has the potential to impact any employee, but OSHA advises that people who work with the general public face increased risks. This includes the following:

  • Customer service representatives;
  • Retail workers;
  • Food and beverage employees;
  • Delivery drivers and letter carriers;
  • Public utility workers;
  • Law enforcement officials;
  • EMS and other emergency providers;
  • Social workers, counselors, and therapists; and
  • Doctors, nurses, and others in the medical field.

Recent cases involving work-related violence occurred right in our own backyard. In June 2017, Mercury News reported on a man dying of cancer who was pulled over in San Jose. He had a car load of weapons and a note indicating he was on his way to kill three doctors involved in his care. Just a week later, SF Gate reported on a disgruntled employee who opened fire at the San Francisco UPS facility, killing three workers and injuring two others.

Protecting Yourself on the Job

To protect employees against workplace violence, OSHA advises employers and supervisors to take a zero tolerance policy when it comes to any type of threat. Policies should be incorporated into workplace manuals, and all employees should be aware of procedures to follow in the event of an emergency.

You can help protect yourself when on the job by doing the following:

  • Learn how to recognize and avoid potentially violent situations;
  • Attend training seminars to learn tactics on how to deescalate situations;
  • Alert supervisors immediately to any concerns you have, either about a customer or a coworker;
  • Avoid entering situations or areas which you could make you vulnerable to attack; and
  • Be aware of emergency exits and alarms in your office or building.

In the event you are injured as the result of violence on the job, you may be able to get benefits through the California Division of Workers’ Compensation. You may also be entitled to file a personal injury claim against the suspect or other third parties involved.

Reach Out to Us Today for Help

When serious injuries jeopardize your health and your ability to provide for your loved ones, get the professional legal representation you need and contact Jachimowicz Law Group online right away. We can arrange a free consultation with a skilled San Jose workers’ compensation and personal injury attorney who can advise you on the best course of action in your case.

Sources:

https://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/factsheet-workplace-violence.pdf

http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/06/06/man-suspected-of-intending-to-kill-three-bay-area-doctors-arrested-in-san-jose/

http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Workplace-violence-UPS-Would-you-know-what-to-do-11220197.php

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