Danger At Work
Work in this country is a lot safer than it was 40 years ago. That's when the federal government mandated safe workplaces for all American workers. Yet thousands of Americans still die on the job each year; several million are hurt.
This five–part series explores the causes and consequences of unsafe working conditions in Washington state.
Our investigation found that safety laws are poorly enforced, leaving many workers exposed to unsafe, even violent, workplaces.
Monday, July 11, 2011
In other industries, federal law mandates the use of safety equipment any time employees get a few feet off the ground. But it's perfectly legal for electrical lineworkers to climb high overhead with no protection. In fact, it's the industry standard.
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Someone dies on the job in Washington state about every four days. Somebody reports being injured every few hours. KUOW has found that workplace safety laws are rarely enforced. When state officials do try to enforce the law, they often look in the wrong places.
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
The most violent profession in Washington state isn't a cop or security guard or corrections officer — it's a nurse's aide. And registered nurses are next in line.
Thursday, July 14, 2011
The most violent workplace in Washington is a hospital — the state's largest psychiatric hospital. For people who work at Western State Hospital in Lakewood, danger and injury are facts of life, just as mental illness is a fact of life for the people they care for.
Friday, July 15, 2011
Last year's refinery blast in Anacortes killed seven and made national news. Most people who die on the job get much less attention. KUOW's John Ryan sent in this audio postcard from a ceremony for all 92 Washingtonians who didn't make it home from work last year.