Will the rise in automation led to a rise in negligence claims in the workplace?

The introduction of artificial intelligence (AI) is set to revolutionise the workplace by completely changing production lines, administrative tasks and boosting productivity. While innovative technologies are transforming the workplace, the debate on where responsibility lies is still a cause for concern.

Technology failures are like human errors – no matter how hard you try and what processes you have in place, they are bound to happen. The main difference between the two is that human errors are made by individuals and they can therefore be held accountable for their actions. Whereas the technology that is set to be in place in the near future does not have such ownership over their actions.

The Present

The Times recently wrote about how lawyers are worried that they will be looking at a rise in negligence claims due to a stronger reliance on technology. Workplace injuries are also predicted to rise due to machines malfunctioning or underperforming. While technological issues are fixed, this could temporarily create a dangerous environment for human workers or those using its services.

With all of this in mind, some anxiety over how these technologies can be safely integrated is understandable. Addressing this would mean various changes to current employment options, personal injury claims and procedures, as well as health and safety regulations.

The Prevention

New jobs

An influx of new technologies will inevitably create new jobs to manage and service this. There will be various roles where the individual’s responsibility will purely be to check the machinery to make sure it is upgraded and performing as it should be.

Many have imagined the different types of positions that will follow alongside their robot counterparts. In the future, we may have people in charge of training machines, including familiarising them with their surroundings and human partners, so that they can work together in harmony and effectively.

Claims

The way in which personal injury claims are investigated will surely change the more technology becomes intertwined with businesses. At the moment, liabilities lie mainly with the manufacturer, but this is something that could change with the introduction of those new jobs. Of course, this prevention only helps when the individual can check the machine constantly, otherwise the risk remains.

Health, Safety and GDPR

To accommodate the new workforce, health and safety regulations are sure to change. From inside factories to the GDPR compliances of an office-based AI system, there are many factors that will need to be considered when analysing the procedures that could potentially involve the technology.

In wake of the growing reliance of technology, the human workforce needs to focus on how it can better itself by allowing machines to handle mundane tasks efficiently – so that they are able to focus on the more creative and human elements of their work. However, while the workplace may change, the safety of human workers and the quality of the work should continue to remain strong.

Are you looking for advice or representation? We are experts in Personal Injury, Serious Injury and Family Law. Contact Lysander Law for more information.