- Workplace accidents can be very costly in terms of human and financial costs for businesses.
- Lost productivity is one of the most common costs due to workplace accidents, as employees may be unable to work while they recover from their injuries.
- Medical expenses, legal costs, and property damage are all additional financial costs of workplace accidents.
- Businesses should take proactive steps to prevent workplace accidents by providing safety training and more.
Workplace accidents are a severe issue in the United States, with an estimated 4 million serious injuries and illnesses occurring yearly. Of these, approximately 5,000 results in fatalities. In 2018, for instance, a total of 5,250 fatal work injuries were reported across the nation, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Here’s what you need to know about workplace accidents in the U.S.
Workplace Accidents and Their Cost
Workplace accidents can be costly in terms of human and financial costs. From medical bills to lost productivity, accidents in the workplace can have a lasting impact on businesses. Here are four ways that workplace accidents are costing your business.
One of the most common costs associated with workplace accidents is lost productivity. When an employee is injured, they may be unable to work for days or even weeks while they recover from their injuries.
This means that their work must be completed by another person or done without their assistance. This can lead to delays in projects and missed deadlines, resulting in a loss of revenue for your business.
Another significant cost associated with workplace accidents is medical expenses. Depending on the severity of the injury, medical care can range from minor first-aid treatments to effective surgeries and long-term rehabilitation programs. These costs can add up quickly, leaving businesses with hefty bills to pay for medical care related to workplace injuries.
Workplace injuries also often result in legal costs for businesses. For example, companies may face expensive litigation fees and settlements if an employee decides to sue after being injured at work. Therefore, businesses must have adequate insurance coverage to protect against these costs if they arise due to a workplace accident.
Another cost associated with workplace accidents is property damage. Depending on the type of accident and its severity, significant damage may be done to equipment, buildings, and other structures related to business operations. In some cases, this damage may require costly repairs or replacements that could otherwise be avoided if proper safety protocols were followed in the workplace.
Tips to Avoid These Costs
Thankfully, there are steps that businesses can take to avoid the costs associated with workplace accidents. Employers should:
One of the best ways to prevent workplace accidents is through safety training. This should involve educating employees on safe practices and procedures and providing clear instructions and adequate supervision.
Create a Safety Plan
Creating a safety plan should be one of the first steps to starting or growing your business. A safety plan should include a risk assessment, emergency procedures, and clear policies on reporting incidents and injuries. This plan should be regularly reviewed and updated, significantly if you change your workplace or hire new staff members.
Ensure Proper Training
Every employee should receive appropriate training for their role in the company. This includes teaching them about safe working practices, how to spot potential hazards in the workplace, and how to use any equipment they may need to do their job safely. It’s also essential to provide regular refresher courses, so everyone is up-to-date on best practices for avoiding workplace accidents.
Encourage Open Communication
Open communication is essential when it comes to preventing workplace accidents. Make sure that all employees feel comfortable speaking up about potential risks or unsafe behaviors they observe in the workplace; you want them to feel empowered to speak out if something doesn’t seem right or could cause an accident. Additionally, create an environment where employees feel safe asking questions if they don’t understand how something works or how to do something safely—it’s better for them to ask than guess incorrectly and put themselves at risk of injury!
Know a Trusted Lawyer
Workplace injuries can be problematic. However, if you know a trusted personal injury attorney, you can get the necessary representation and legal advice. They can assist in navigating the complexities of workplace accidents and help your business understand its rights and responsibilities under the law.
By following these tips, businesses can take steps to avoid costly workplace accidents—and keep their employees safe in the process. While there is no guarantee that an accident won’t occur on the job, taking proactive steps to prevent them is always a good idea.