Safety in the Workplace

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Q: I was working on a construction project at an apartment complex. I was assigned to the pool deck job. I was cutting exposed concrete with a handheld nine-inch electrically-driven ‘angle grinder’.

When I had opened the toolbox for the grinder, I could not find the side handle for it. I complained to my foreman, three times, that the handle was gone.  Without the handle, no one has control over the machine.  He always said that I should go back to work and work without it.

After cutting for two hours without the side handle, I reached a point where a balcony projected out.  In order to continue with my task, I stretched out on the deck underneath the balcony, resting on my right side.  My headroom was limited, and I was lying about two feet away from the wall.

After working in this position for a while, with at least one interruption to get up and look again for a handle, that grinder kicked back.

A: Under the Labor Law section 241(6), “All areas in which construction, excavation or demolition work is being performed shall be so constructed, shored, equipped, guarded, arranged, operated and conducted as to provide reasonable and adequate protection and safety to the persons employed therein or lawfully frequenting such places.”

You are such a person, and you deserve to prevail.

By: Scott Baron,
Attorney at Law Advertorial

The law responds to changed conditions; exceptions and variations abound. Here, the information is general; always seek out competent counsel. This article shall not be construed as legal advice.

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