What exactly is a toxic substance? How do toxic substances harm the human body?
A full quarter of the injuries that occur in warehouses happen right at the loading dock. The hustle and bustle of the shipping and receiving atmosphere creates many opportunities for unwary workers to hurt themselves or others working around them.
Chicago has been a major industrial hub of the Midwest since the 19th century. Industries have come and gone, yet the city on the shores of Lake Michigan remains a stalwart manufacturing center for the nation.
Workplace violence is a serious matter that makes workers all across the nation nervous and wary. The sad fact is that most of us have to work with unpleasant co-workers, some of whom may even be bullies.
There's always plenty of construction work going on in and around Chicago. But this type of work is fraught with many hazards for construction workers.
When you hear of employees who died at work, often it's a tragic mishap like an explosion, fire or other industrial-type fatality that claims their lives. But another deadly on-the-job hazard is workplace violence.
Even though progress has been made in removing toxins such as lead, asbestos and DDT from certain products, new chemicals and artificial ingredients have made their way into everyday consumer products and building materials. Sometimes toxic materials get into the water and air, where we can't avoid them.
Anyone whose job requires them to work outdoors during Chicago's brutal winters knows that they have to take precautions to prevent illnesses and injuries caused by extreme cold. Employers are required by the Occupational Safety and Health Act to keep workplaces, even when the outdoors in the workplace, as safe as possible for their employees.
Industrial accidents can be particularly serious. Indeed, many are fatal. That was the case for a 41-year-old worker who was killed last month in Chicago Heights.
We've seen too many instances of workplace deaths in recent years, whether it's teachers being killed by an armed assailant or a terminated co-worker returning to exact vengeance on those he believed wronged him. However, hospital employees face the potential for being harmed at work for a number of reasons.