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Factory work and employee safety

On Behalf of | Feb 28, 2018 | Workers' Compensation

New Jersey workers whose average work days consist of long office hours and desk duties may not understand the inherent hazards found in other industries. While an accident can occur at any time and in any setting, work in fields such as construction and manufacturing present significant dangers upon every shift. New Jersey employees who feel their work environment is not safe have rights to make complaints to employers, and ultimately make change.

Contrary to what many might believe, dangerous factory work did not end with the Radium Girls, who contracted poisoning from a toxic work environment; workers in various types of manufacturing settings can face severe conditions today. Business Insider recently focused on the controversy surrounding Tesla and the safety of its factory workers, noting that employees had complained of long hours and unattended injuries. Some even reported complaints to United Auto Workers. However, the company has seen a 25 percent decrease in worker injuries since modifying its safety practices, and has since updated its policies. 

Tesla’s company-wide crisis over safety hazards was apparently long forseen, according to CNBC News in a report from last August. Entrepreneur Elon Musk had warned the public of a manufacturing catastrophe within the company, which saw an 8.8 percent injury rate in 2015. That 2015 data was 31 percent higher than the injury rate in the automobile industry collectively, as CNBC shared using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Problems included concerns over health and safety, lack of communication between employers and employees and unclear safety policies. Workers hope to see a future of improved safety measures and a clearer picture on aspects such as wage raises. Any company giant such as Tesla has chances of seeing trouble at some point down the road, but few companies find success without satsified and safe employees.