Ensuring that all work sites are safe is a goal everyone endorses. No one- from management to contract worker- wants any person to be hurt or suffer a fatal injury. Even when personal injuries are avoided, it is easy to see how accidents can slow or stop work, delay production and ruin property and equipment… and that’s before lengthy and costly litigation is even considered. Accidents increase insurance rates and affect a company’s reputation.
Approximately 120 million industrial accidents occur in the work place world wide each year, at the cost of billions of dollars and 210,000 lives. Causes of industrial accidents can be broken down into two broad categories: unsafe conditions and unsafe acts.
Unsafe conditions can include insufficient workspace lighting, excessive noise, slippery or unsafe flooring, extreme temperature exposure, inadequate protection when working with machinery or hazardous materials, unstable structures, electrical problems, machine malfunction or failure, and more. The causes of industrial accidents that involve unsafe acts can include actions — or failures to act — which result in injury. These are often a result of employee negligence but employers, organizations, and product manufacturers can also be liable for industrial accidents.
The spirit of the law in the past was that the employer would accept the liability of any accident on company time no matter who was at fault. In return the employer could expect not to be sued for negligence. It may have worked for a long time, but recently has been questioned as more employees file suits. It is now vital that companies develop top-down safety training programs in order to reduce accidents. This means more than just guarding and stripes- it means proper education and training, embraced by management and employees alike. It means properly recognizing hazards and potential hazards, and eliminating them in the workplace. It means that protocols for accidents and emergencies must be developed and followed, and that accidents and injuries be properly and uniformly logged. Proper safety education can be a huge factor in raising revenues, cutting costs and, most importantly, preventing injuries and saving lives. Preventing employee injuries and deaths is good business for everyone.
If you have a pending case involving workplace safety, contact CED today. We have several engineers who specialize in industrial accidents, slip & fall accidents, heavy machinery and human factors.