School cited as being at-fault in student's wrongful death

Officials from the United States Occupation and Health Administration (OSHA) have reportedly told Yale University that improper safety precautions may have contributed to the wrongful death of one of their students. Several months ago a student working in a school chemistry laboratory was injured when her hair became caught in a machine she was working on. The machine accident pulled her in to the fast-spinning mechanism and caused her fatal injuries. The young female victim had been working on her thesis at the time of the injury and was rushed to the trauma center of a close hospital. Unfortunately, she died of the injuries and the federal OSHA regulators opened up an investigation of wrongful death due to noncompliance with safety standards. The OSHA investigators noted that some workers from the school also used the facility and therefore this accident fell under their jurisdiction, as a possible work accident. According to their report, the investigators found that the school had not followed the necessary safety precautions and this helped lead to the victim’s injuries and ultimate death. Safety violations included not having the proper instructions for use of the machine posted and not having an emergency shut-off switch. Officials believe that an emergency cut-off switch would have allowed the accident victim to shut down power to the machine before suffering such severe injuries. Reports also stated that safety precautions should have included students not working alone in the lab. Proper supervision and guidance, as well as the other necessary safety precautions, may have saved this young woman from the deadly accident. Personal injury and wrongful death attorneys often deal with injuries or deaths that could have been prevented. A New York accident lawyer who specializes in these types of cases and lawsuits explained that further investigation is necessary to properly determine the extent of the negligence that may have lead to this victim’s death. You can find out more about the OSHA investigation and report here.

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