Occupational injuries cost businesses in the United States more than $250 billion dollars1 a year in missed work, medical care and legal costs. But for every dollar spent on injury prevention, businesses can expect six times the return on investment.2
Common causes of occupational injuries include:
- Slips, trips and falls
- Repetitive motions
- Defective equipment
- Hazardous materials
- Vehicular accidents
These tips can help employers prevent occupational injuries in the workplace.
- Establish a comprehensive injury prevention program. This includes general procedures that apply to everyone, as well as job-specific procedures and the mandated use of personal protective equipment as appropriate.
- Conduct regular safety training seminars.
- Create an open dialogue with your employees about reporting unsafe conditions and any injuries that occur in the workplace immediately.
- If unsafe conditions are reported, all work in the affected area should cease until the situation has been corrected.
- Maintain all equipment with regular inspection and service.
Some jobs, such as construction, have inherent risks, but employees can still do their part to help prevent occupational injuries.
- Follow all established procedures, including the proper use of personal protective equipment.
- Focus on the task at hand.
- Maintain awareness of surroundings and/or changing conditions.
- Report any unsafe environments or behaviors immediately.
- Report any injuries immediately.
- Communicate openly with supervisors about how to improve safety.
Despite rigorous safety practices, accidental occupational injuries can still occur. Physical rehabilitation can help these injuries heal faster and more completely, and help workers prevent re-injury in the future. Our Industrial Rehabilitation program provides area employers with a variety of services to help keep their employees safe at work. Call 740.439.8000 for information.
1. U.S. Work-Related Injuries, Illnesses Cost $250 Billion Annually: Study. Occupational Health & Safety. Available at: http://ohsonline.com/articles/2012/01/23/us-workrelated-injuries-illnesses-cost-250-billion-annually-study.aspx. Accessed 1/20/2015.
2. Injury and Illness Prevention Programs. United States Department of Labor Occupational Health and Safety Administration. Available at: https://www.osha.gov/dsg/topics/safetyhealth/. Accessed 1/20/2015.