Dennis Kenny Law
Menu Contact
View Our Practice Areas

Why workers need to be on guard against 'normalization'

It might be the understatement of the decade to say that it has been a tough winter here in the Northeastern section of the U.S. Sadly, most of us have become accustomed to the sizeable snowfalls and frigid temperatures.

While it goes without saying that these kinds of brutal conditions can make a person's work life that much harder, experts indicate that it can also make it that much more dangerous.

Specifically, these safety experts indicate that those workers whose duties require them to perform at least some element of their job outdoors are always at an elevated risk of suffering work injuries when conditions are cold, snowy and icy.

However, they indicate that when conditions have been as continuously bad as they have this year, they are perhaps at an even greater risk due to a phenomenon known as normalization.

Normalization typically means that people are more willing to engage in more dangerous conduct or accept looser safety practices in the name of speed if they have heretofore not suffered because of it.

Alternatively, one author describes normalization as "the more people do something without suffering a bad outcome, the harder it becomes for them to remain aware of the risks associated with that behavior."

By way of illustration, consider workers whose jobs require them to work outdoors on ladders. Over the last few months, many may have started rushing toward the end of a task or overreaching in part because the weather is so cold that they don't want to be outdoors any longer than necessary and because they have done this for weeks without consequences.

Unfortunately, these workers are at an elevated risk of work injuries due to normalization. (If you don't believe it, statistics show that regions here in the Northeast have seen a dramatic uptick in the number of ladder falls over the last few months.)

What all this means is that even though we're finally nearing the end of this brutal winter, workers must make an effort to remain as safety conscious as they normally are over the coming weeks to ensure their continued welfare.

If you have suffered a serious work injury and would like to learn more about your options as they relate to workers' compensation, please consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible.

Source: MedCity News, "Winter-related work injuries are more likely to occur at the end of a task," Nicole Oran, Feb. 20, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Contact Our Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Locations

Newburgh Office: Main Office
288 North Plank Road
Newburgh, NY 12550

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Newburgh Law Office Map

Poughkeepsie Office
3344 U.S. 9, 1st Floor
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Poughkeepsie Law Office Map

Goshen Office
55 Main Street
Goshen, NY 10924

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Goshen Law Office Map

Albany Office
18 Computer Drive West
Albany, NY 12208

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Albany Law Office Map

Kingston Office
303 Clinton Avenue, 2nd Floor
Kingston, NY 12401

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Kingston Law Office Map

Middletown Office
1 Dolson Avenue
Middletown, NY 10940

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Map & Directions

City of Newburgh Office
744 Broadway
Newburgh, NY 12550

Map & Directions