Construction accidents can be entirely prevented in the vast majority of incidents. They usually happen because someone was not being as safe or as mindful as the jobsite required them to be. As such, it is important for every worker on a construction site to know how to report any jobsite hazards they encounter. Otherwise, you could be inadvertently contributing to a workplace accident that leaves you or a coworker seriously injured because you had erroneously thought that “someone else will deal with it.”
When you notice a hazard in your workplace, you should immediately notify a supervisor, who can take action to address it. They might instruct you to place warning signage around the hazard until it can be cleaned up or corrected, for example.
Telling your supervisor is usually the first and only step that needs to be done to handle a jobsite hazard. But when they ignore your report, or the same hazard has occurred multiple times despite their efforts to correct it, then it is time to get Illinois Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) involved by reporting the hazard to them instead.
Illinois OSHA has the responsibility to:
- Provide regular inspections to worksites in all industries
- Respond to reports of hazards from workers or third-parties
- Investigate new hazards
- Take corrective actions against employers that neglect hazards
- Create workplace safety educational opportunities
- Promote workplace safety in all its forms
If you work in the public sector, you can submit a report to Illinois OSHA by following these links:
- Printable “Notice of Alleged Safety or Health Hazards” form to mail to Illinois OSHA
- Online “Illinois OSHA Safety and Health Complaint Form”
Importantly, you should not use one of these forms if there is a health emergency at your jobsite due to a construction accident. If someone has been severely injured, then you should call 911 first. Next, you can call Illinois OSHA at 217-782-7860 to use their emergency hotline. Fatalities should be reported to the hotline with 8 hours of the accident. Severe injuries that required hospitalization or caused the loss of a limb or an eye should be reported to the hotline within 24 hours.
Your employer should be the party to make and submit these reports. But the point is that they might not if they are trying to avoid being cited for a serious OSHA violation. Every worker, especially in the construction industry, should know about the hotline and how to submit the workplace hazard reports listed above if they want to be fully invested in their own jobsite safety.
After OSHA, Call Us
McHargue & Jones, LLC proudly offers our legal services to construction workers in Chicago and the surrounding area. If you were hurt on the job because of a jobsite hazard, then we can help you pursue compensation, which might come through a workers’ compensation claim or a personal injury claim, depending on your employment status. To learn more, arrange a free initial consultation with our attorneys today.