Electrical workers in New Jersey may be exposed to an array of dangers on the job, especially when dealing with live electricity. Electrical injuries can be particularly dangerous, and workers have even lost their lives on the job due to workplace accidents and injuries. As a result, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reached out to private industry to construct a standard for assessing whether a workplace is electrically safe. OSHA, the federal agency responsible for taking enforcement action against dangerous workplaces and imposing regulations, frequently seeks to work in partnership with the industries it regulates.
In this case, industry produced a workplace safety standard known as NFPA 70E, which aims to lay out a set of guidelines and rules to ensure an electrically safe workplace. While these regulations protect worker safety, they are also designed with an eye toward increased efficiency and productivity on the job. Rather than taking more time and costing more money to have a safe workplace, many employers have found that they achieve more and have fewer unnecessary costs.
For example, NFPA 70E requires that workers plan out an electrical job before dealing with live wires. They must gather all necessary equipment like tools, ladders or protective gear in advance of beginning work. They should also plan the job and do a walk-through first, giving an opportunity to spot signs of potential danger. In addition to preventing accidents, this can also avoid unnecessary repair or redone work due to initial mistakes. In addition, work can be completed without being stopped repeatedly for changes or additional gear.
In some cases, employers fail to follow workplace safety regulations and workers are left unprotected and in dangerous conditions. Employees who have been injured in a workplace accident might seek out a workers' compensation lawyer to pursue the benefits they deserve.