Workplace injuries are often not fatal, but they’re still a very real concern for employers. The Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that there were 2.9 million injuries or illnesses reported in 2016 in the private sector.
These injuries are often reported to the company that the employee works for, and a workers’ compensation claim is filed. And while a business is shielded from most forms of liability, this doesn’t mean that third-party suppliers and individuals can’t be held responsible.
“For example, let’s say you are a driver for UPS and were in a car crash while making a delivery. Your claim against UPS would be for workers’ comp. But you may also have a third-party claim against others who were responsible for the accident,” writes https://www.sgklawyers.com/.
Businesses can help prevent workplace injuries and illnesses. How?
1. Implement A Safety And Wellness Plan
The first and most important step is to incorporate a safety and wellness plan for your business. Plans provide the basic foundation for preventing illness and injury. A proper plan can be formed that covers:
- Employee safety
- Employee health
OSHA recommends incorporating a four-point workplace program. A basic plan allows for the following:
- Worksite analysis
- Hazard prevention
- Management commitment/employee involvement
A safety plan is the most important step a business can take to lower the risk of injury or illness in the workplace.
2. Assess Current Safety Issues And Risks
Current safety issues and risks should be assessed. Workplace hazards that can be addressed should be addressed immediately. This means a proper analysis of the current workplace safety standards and analysis of:
- Common accidents
- Common complaints
For example, if workers routinely cut their hands on a slicer, proper safety should be implemented to reduce these injuries.
3. Encourage Staff And Management Communication
Communication between the staff and management is recommended. The idea is to create an environment where employees feel comfortable enough to express their concerns with management. Workers know what safety risks they face daily.
And workers should be an integral part of your safety plan.
Encourage workers to discuss their issues with management. An anonymous recommendation system can also help and will ensure that workers feel comfortable mentioning the safety issues they face.
4. Protective Equipment
Proper protective equipment saves lives and reduces injuries and illness. Providing the equipment is not enough. Management needs to:
- Enforce safety equipment requirements at hiring
- Monitor safety equipment usage
- Hold meetings discussing proper safety equipment usage and changes
Protective equipment is a must-have in any workplace environment, and when workers are taught about proper usage and scenarios when safety equipment ought to be used, the risk of injury or illness will plummet.
5. Equipment And Vehicle Inspection And Maintenance
Equipment needs to be properly inspected and maintained. Inspection and maintenance can reduce the risk of accidents and injuries. It’s recommended that monthly inspections are performed to reduce the risk of accidents.
Quick and efficient repairs will provide a better experience for employees while also reducing the risk of injury. Maintenance of all machines, equipment, and vehicles should be discussed with the manufacturer.
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