Most industries have inherent dangers, and the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health prescribes industry-specific safety standards. Employers must take the necessary steps to protect employees from known hazards, even those who are seasoned workers with years of experience. Safety authorities often warn about the dangers of complacency, which is the cause of many workers’ compensation claims that are filed each year.
Complacency is an error trap that might not receive the attention it deserves. One way of mitigating it might be to schedule frequent training sessions for all workers — regardless of their experience levels. It might be the only natural for workers who have done the same jobs for years, without any adverse incidents or accidents that caused injuries, to disregard the safety regulations and take shortcuts.
Complacency among experienced workers can also harm newer, inexperienced workers. Even if newer workers receive the necessary safety training, they might follow the lead of more skilled workers who have become complacent — with potentially devastating consequences. If they see that senior workers disregard safety standards without being injured, they might do the same. Frequent refresher training courses will serve to remind experienced workers how careful they were when they were newbies.
Fortunately, the California workers’ compensation insurance system is a no-fault program. This means that even if complacency was the cause of a work-related injury, that worker is likely still eligible for benefits to cover medical expenses and a portion of lost wages. An attorney with experience in dealing with the state-regulated insurance system can assist with the benefits claims process.