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Lightning can claim lives in construction workers' accidents

The lives of construction workers in Ohio are threatened by much more than the risk of falling from heights. Every year some fatal construction workers' accidents involve lightning. Even though lightning can sometimes be anticipated, it can strike anywhere. One person was killed and a second one suffered injuries when lightning struck at a construction site in another state on June 27.

Employers must be familiar with the safety guidelines as provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration along with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Checking weather reports before the commencement of outdoor jobs can prevent workers being caught in the open when lightning strikes. This guide provides information about places and objects to avoid during storms along with safe places to seek shelter.

NOAA says lightning can strike during the development of a storm, so employers must be aware of dark clouds gathering and increasing wind speeds. However, a bolt of lightning after a storm has passed is also not impossible. Authorities also warn that lightning can strike as far as 10 miles away from rainfall during a storm.

Employees in Ohio can also check weather reports and should not risk their lives while waiting for orders to move to safe shelters. Lightning can be deadly, and a list of safe shelters must be available on any construction site. If lives are lost in construction workers' accidents, the surviving families can pursue financial assistance by filing survivors' benefits claims with the workers' compensation insurance program for the state. Injured victims may also be eligible for benefits to cover medical expenses and lost wages.

Source: forconstructionpros.com, "Stay Safe from Lightning Strikes on the Jobsite", Jessica Stoikes, Accessed on Aug. 4, 2017

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