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Employers Urged to Reiterate Safety Protocols in Light of San Diego Workplace Fatality

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By Michael Pines, Accident & Injury Prevention Expert

After a 68-year-old man was tragically killed in a workplace accident earlier this month, employers are urged to revisit their safety protocol policies to prevent future accidents in San Diego.

According to reports (

https://bit.ly/185TY6a

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), an employee at Central Auto Parts on Datsun Street in Otay Mesa was found fatally injured. Authorities believe a forklift may have run over the 68-year-old Tijuana native.

Although no further details have been published, the fatality is believed to have been an accident.

As in all cases of workplace injury or death, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will further investigate the cause of the forklift accident.

EMPLOYERS: ARE YOUR SAFETY PROTOCOLS UP-TO-DATE?

Every California employee has the right to a safe and healthy workplace environment. In fact, according to the California Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1973, it is unlawful for employees to work in an unsafe and unsatisfactory environment. As a part of the act, all employers must have an

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Injury and Illness Prevention (IIP)

Program

in place.

Employers, how does your IIP program stack up? If you’re like many small businesses in San Diego, you may either have no knowledge of the program or you may have put it off.

Remember, establishing an IIP program is the law for all employers in the state of California. Here’s what you can do to get started.

CREATE AN OUTLINE & ACTION PLAN THAT EMPHASIZES SAFETY.

Your OSHA-mandated IIP program does not have to be complex to adhere to the law. It can be fairly simple as long as it is clear and comprehensive. When developing the details of your plan, be sure to think about existing safety protocols, required training and other rules or workplace procedures. Build an outline first; then, create an action plan for each section.

ASSIGN RESPONSIBILITIES.

You should delegate certain safety-related responsibilities to supervisors and managers. Don’t forget about your employees, though. Everyone can assume some level of responsibility even if it’s as simple as promising to report a potential safety issue or agreeing to take attendance at regularly-scheduled safety meetings.

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INITIATE A SAFETY & HEALTH SURVEY.

Employers should identify any potential hazards in their workplace environment including chemicals, large machinery, work practices and any special considerations to other Cal/OSHA standards and work in into the contents of their IIPP

CREATE COMMUNICATION GUIDELINES AND DOCUMENTATION PROTOCOL.

It’s important that your IIP program incorporates proper communication and reporting guidelines as set by Cal/OSHA. This section of your program will probably take the most time to develop. More detail on communication standards can be

found here

  1. Fortunately, Cal/OSHA can help you build your IPP program. According to the California Department of Industrial Relations, the Cal/OSHA Consultation Service is available for assistance. Learn more about the

Illness and Injury Prevention Program

, or to contact a Cal/OSHA consultant,

click here.

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Michael Pines

is a personal injury attorney at the

Law Offices of Michael Pines, APC

in San Diego, California. He is an accident and injury prevention expert, on a campaign to end senseless injury one article at a time. Catch Mike on

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