Work injury and young workers: Promoting safety on the job

When young workers seek employment, it is often with the intention of saving for their education or other future needs. While working is a great way to gain real-world experience, it can also bring the risk of injury for young workers. Oklahoma employers must make every effort to promote safety in the workplace and properly train every person on the job to detect risks and avoid work injury, both young and old.

Younger workers are not uncommon. In fact, employees under the age of 25 comprise approximately 13 percent of the American workforce. Unfortunately, this demographic is twice as likely to experience a work accident and injury as those workers who are 25 years and older. This could be related to a lack of physical development or lack of maturity.

Many young people are still developing their cognitive skills and may not be able to complete certain tasks safely. For example, a young person employed on a farm may not be able to physically handle a tractor or comprehend how to operate the machinery properly. Oklahoma employers must provide proper training, safety equipment and full explanation of their job requirements. 

When an individual does suffer a work injury, he or she has certain rights, no matter his or her age. Young injured workers may benefit from the assistance of an experienced workers' compensation lawyer who can help file a claim and navigate the claims process, including handling any necessary appeals. A case evaluation is a beneficial way to learn about one's options after an on-the-job accident. 

Source: cdc.gov, "Young Worker Safety and Health", Accessed on March 16, 2016

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