According to the National Safety Council (NSC), 4.5 million workplace injuries occur every year. That means that every 7 seconds, a worker’s life is impacted by an injury, either temporarily or permanently. Some of the most common causes of injury are overexertion, coming into contact with objects and equipment, and slips, trips and falls.
Slips, Trips and Falls
Slips, trips and falls were some of the top causes of injuries in terms of both frequency and severity. While injuries occurring on the same level were the most common type, falls from an elevation increased injury severity and led with a very high cost per claim. Most slip, trip and fall incidents caused injuries to the knee, ankle or back. Nonprofits, hospitals, restaurants, carpentry, roofing, and transportation were among the industries most affected.
Prevent slip, trip and fall injuries by requiring employees to wear appropriate footwear and not walk quickly or run through work environments. Make sure floor surfaces are dry and clear, and that items such as rugs or cords are secured. Urge employees to pay attention to their walking path and discourage them from carrying loads that may obstruct their view. Removing walkway hazards can prevent the injuries that result from them.
Sprains and Strains
Sprains and strains caused the most workplace injuries resulting in lost-time claims. With a cost per claim 24 percent lower than average, these injuries are not as shocking or severe as some other categories. However, they are the most common. Most of these injuries were caused by lifting, pushing and pulling. More than half occurred to the shoulders, back, and knees. Sprains and strains were frequent in restaurants, healthcare (including hospitals and home health), firefighters, and residential construction.
The most common struck by injuries resulted from the injured being struck by another person (primarily colleagues or patients), or by falling or flying objects. The most severe injuries occurred when individuals were struck by motor vehicles, often because the driver didn’t see them, or because brake or safety mechanisms were not properly engaged. Train your employees on how to properly use machinery to reduce the possibility of being struck. Never allow improper use of the machines, such as standing in elevated loading buckets. Employees should never stand directly in front of or behind working machines.
The Bottom Line
Workplace injuries can have a devastating impact on your business and your employees. You can avoid many of the most common workplace injuries by implementing safety measures and educating employees on best practices.
Commit today to making 2019 an injury-free year for your workplace, and please let your Granite Team Member know how we can help your business implement safety measures for best practices.