Keys to Preventing Workplace Injuries

Being proactive leads to prevention – a great saying, right? But how can you oversee every employee to make sure they are safe and don’t get hurt on the job? You can’t of course, but there are some things you can do to significantly lower the chances of workplace injury.

On-the-job-injuries cost your company time and money, so it is important to realize that education is the first step toward prevention. By becoming familiar with the most common workplace injuries below, you can reduce the number of workplace injuries facing you and your employees.

Overexertion Injuries related to pulling, lifting, pushing, holding, carrying, and throwing heavy items. This is consistently the number one workplace injury.

Highway Incidents Cases where transportation is used for business purposes and an automobile accident occurs.

Hernias Overexertion due to improper lifting/carrying, but is commonly overlooked.

Slips or Trips and Falls Falls from wet or slippery floors, or small miscellaneous items that are out of sight that are easy to trip over.

Fall to Lower Level Falls from elevated areas such as a ladder, rooftops, or stairways.

Cuts/Burns Injuries related to chopping food, cutting materials, cleaning tools, and dealing with hot foods or electrical machinery.

Machinery Accidents Inappropriate operation of large and dangerous machinery where employees may get caught or compressed by it.

Understanding the most common workplace injuries is the first step in establishing a true preventative action plan.  The second step is to implement safety tips to help prevent injuries from happening in the workplace. These include:

When trying to prevent overexertion and hernias, always tell your employees to seek additional assistance or use devices to assist with lifting or moving of heavy items.  Additionally, providing supplemental training in body mechanics can reduce strain injuries, and keep employees safe.

Proper housekeeping is another way to reduce injuries from slips or trips and falls.  Making sure your work area is always clean and clutter-free is very important in preventing these kinds of injuries.  A great way to help prevent slip and falls is using an anti-slip coating on the floors or making sure your employees are wearing anti-slip footwear.

In preventing falls to lower levels, you should always make sure that ladders are in proper working order and scaffolding has been built and repaired correctly before anyone tries to use it.  It’s critical to make sure that those tools are always inspected and maintained every week.  Also, always remind employees to make sure to always wear proper fall protection clothes where applicable.

Educate employees and management staff. Continually cultivate a safety standard among employees and management staff, especially to help prevent machinery accidents and cuts/burns.  Train employees about the importance of following safety measures as often as possible.  Supplemental training on dangerous machinery, cutting materials, and sharp tools will help your employees understand how to use equipment in the hopes of preventing any accidents in the future.

Provide protection equipment. Personal protection equipment is essential and should be enforced at hiring, training, and spontaneous monitoring.  Take the time to teach your employees how to properly use goggles, face protection, gloves, hard hats, safety shoes, and earplugs/ear muffs. Finally, don’t take shortcuts. Accidents can happen when employees skip the proper safety steps or instructions to complete a job ahead of schedule.  Make sure all instructions are clear and organized to prevent accidents from happening in the workplace.

Now that you’ve been educated, spread the word to those who work for you. Helping everyone in the workplace understand the importance of safety on the job will not only prevent serious injury, but will save your company time and money.

Workers’ compensation laws are complex, so it is important to have an expert that can assist and guide you through these issues. With DecisionHR, you are partnering with a company that has years of experience and dedicated professionals in the workers’ compensation field. We can help – contact us today!

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