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Should Pennsylvania work sites have stricter safety regulations?

Workplace and construction site safety regulations are a hot topic of conversation against as the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania reviews possible changes to local laws. The changes were proposed by a committee to the city council in response to the collapse of a building in Philadelphia this summer in which six people were killed. The collapse occurred on a demolition site, leading local officials to question whether current safety requirements were enough to protect workers and prevent workplace accidents.

The committee recommended an expansive list of changes from including an independent site-safety monitor to increased training requirements and more involved from the Fire Department. A total of 71 discreet recommendations were made.

If there are 71 areas for improvement on Philadelphia work sites, questions arise as to whether there may be a state-wide workplace safety problem. In fact, although one building collapse was covered extensively by the media, city council members pointed out that three other similar demolition related accidents occurred within the next two months. Each of the sites where an accident occurred had been properly inspected by the local authorities, leading lawmakers to the conclusion that the inspections and licensing process is currently insufficient to protect workers on construction sites.

Workers who are employed in a particularly hazardous field such as construction should know that they have rights when an accident leaves them injured. Injuries that happen on the job, regardless of the source, are covered by workers compensation insurance.

The proposals will continue through the legislative process before they come binding law, but lawmakers say that could be done by the end of this year. 

 

Source: Philly.com, "Council panel recommends reforms in response to collapse," Bob Warner, Sept. 28, 2013

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