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Company places workers at risk for workplace injuries

A Pennsylvania company is facing a fine from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for exposing workers to excessive heat in the middle of the summer. The company was accused of making employees work in the heat for eight hours on a day when the temperatures rose above 90 degrees. When exposed to heat and harsh work conditions, workers can contract illnesses and suffer from workplace injuries.

The incident occurred as employees were putting steel into place for a new bridge. The employees were made to work in direct sunlight for the duration of the workday and were not provided with any safety measures to protect them from the heat. One worker was taken to the hospital at the end of the day because of heat-related illness.

Work injuries are commonly assumed to include incidents such as burns, slip-and-fall injuries, broken bones, repetitive stress injuries and more. However, a work-related illness is just as harmful as a physical injury and can leave a victim with medical bills and other financial stress. When a person becomes ill because of work conditions, such as toxic exposure or heat exposure, it is grounds for a workers' compensation claim. 

When a Pennsylvania worker suffers because of workplace injuries or a work-related illness, he or she could be eligible for workers' compensation benefits. Seeking financial benefits can be a frustrating process, and many claims are initially denied. A lawyer can help a worker navigate the complex insurance system and claim deserved benefits. If a claim is denied, it is possible to appeal.

Source: lancasteronline.com, "OSHA proposes $4,900 fine on High Structural Erectors for exposing workers to excessive heat", Tim Mekeel, Sept. 15, 2015

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