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  3. Temps at greater risk than permanent workers: US research

A study in the US has suggested that temporary workers face greater risks of injury at work than their permanent colleagues.

The research, carried out by independent investigative journalist bureau ProPublica, looked at compensation claims across five states in the country. The states analysed represented over one fifth of the US population.

In California and Florida for example, two of the largest US states, temporary workers had nearly double the risk of injury than permanent members of staff. On average, the risk to temps was about 54 percent higher.

The intensity of the injuries suffered was also increased. In Florida, contracted staff have twice the risk of suffering from crushes, dislocations and fractures and three times the risk of undergoing an amputation for example.

The conclusions drawn by the research, which polled 100 temporary workers and reviewed over 50 Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) temp worker investigations, determined that temps in the US are more likely to take on riskier jobs, increasing exposure accordingly.

The research also found that the same accidents are happening time and again. There were repeat instances of; asphyxiation in chemical tanks, being caught in plant equipment and heat stroke.

A lack of training and PPE (personal protective equipment) were cited as reasons for the findings, but, the OSHA also suggested that companies are not protecting temp workers effectively for financial reasons.

In the US, a firm taking on a temp worker is not liable for compensation payments in the event of accident and injury.

The rate of injury to temporary workers was also found to be increasing.

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