Workplace deaths sharply up in three states
An increase in workplace fatalities in three Midwestern states has OSHA concerned enough to ramp up the “Safe + Sound Campaign" it launched in 2017 – one which urges employers to develop and implement a safety and health program that includes management leadership, worker participation, and a systematic approach to finding and fixing hazards.
In Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska, worker deaths associated with falls, struck-by objects and vehicles, machine hazards, grain bin engulfment, and burns have seen a sharp increase in recent months. OSHA Regional Administrator Kim Stille said the agency has investigated 34 fatalities in the three states since Oct. 1, 2017.
Stille said implementing and sustaining workplace safety and health programs is the key to avoiding preventable injuries and fatalities. OSHA's "Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs" offers practical advice on how an organization can create and integrate safety and health programs.
OSHA also has compliance assistance for small- and medium-sized businesses at no charge. Each state has its own On-site Consultation Program, a free and confidential program to help employers learn about potential hazards at their workplace, improve safety and health programs. Additionally, OSHA's Safety & Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) recognizes small business employers who have used the agency's On-site Consultation Program services, and operate an exemplary safety and health program. Acceptance of a site into SHARP is an achievement, and serves as a model for worksite safety and health. To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, or file a complaint, call OSHA's hot-line at 800-321-OSHA (6742).