Workplace Accidents: Whose Fault Is It?
Workplace injuries can occur within all industries, whether it is deemed a risk or not, such as manufacturing compared to office work, but who is to blame if the unexpected happened?
Every year businesses invest widely in compliance, committees, management solutions and safety culture to mitigate workplace injuries. Despite those efforts, more is needed. According to the data, the number of injuries per 100 full-time workers in 2020 remained untouched at 2.8. only in the U.S.
Workplace accidents happen, and when they do, they can be a traumatic experience. Most people don't prepare for such things, which is understandable, but more often than not, this can lead to unfortunate mistakes. When someone suffers a workplace injury, they need to know what to do and also what to avoid. This post aims to cut the confusion and give our readers a clear guide on what they should do, blame or not blame if they've suffered an accident at work.
Organizational Safety Expectations
Every business owner has the responsibility to provide safe, responsible working conditions for their workers. That's why workplace safety departments like OSHA exist in the first place and why these policies are diligently enforced in many industries. It is not easy to define these regulations in a universal approach, which is why each industry possesses its own specific guidelines, but every business owner or employee should do their best to familiarize themselves with these regulations.
As an employee, knowing every in-and-out of these safety regulations pays more than you think. You may think of it as a one-time investment -to hire a professional to go through your organization and verify that they are in an acceptable condition for the kind of operations that will be performed in them.
Business Owners Always Bear Some Responsibility
When injured while on-site or due to poor working conditions, the injured party is eligible for compensation that will support recovery and reimburse financial consequences. When the unexpected occurs, the impact is not only physical but also emotional and financial too and, in some cases, can often be life-changing.
Business owners have a legal duty to protect their staff and ensure that any operation taking place on their premises is done safely. When an employer has adhered to the latest health and safety regulation and has provided the employee with appropriate training, but an accident occurs due to the employee choosing not to follow instructions, the injury could be deemed employee fault, and they may not be entitled to compensation.
According to CompensationCalculatorUk.co.Uk, where an employer has to provide the personnel with in-depth training, proper equipment, and facilities to allow the employee to operate safely and an accident was to occur, the employee is eligible for a compensation claim.
For instance, employees could claim that the organization could have done a better job explaining the specific safety guidelines that were broken, or they could accuse the employer of not providing detailed oversight on hazardous operations, which has led to a workplace accident.
All employees are responsible for reporting work-related injuries, illnesses, or accidents to their supervisor. If you were working alone at the time of the accident, you should ensure your colleagues are aware of the incident. That's also important if you later decide to make a workplace injury claim or if there's an investigation. If you followed the safety guidelines and still got injured, be transparent so that your employer and their insurance agents cannot dispute the occurrence of the accident.
What's more, irrespective of whether you plan to make a personal injury claim, if you notify your co-workers of the accident, then hopefully, your colleagues won't make the same mistakes as you did.
It is, after all, a moral obligation to make sure your co-workers do not have the same kind of injuries at work that you've suffered.
How to Promote and Prevent Workplace Safety?
Certain business environments may require extra precautions based on industry and location. However, these strategies are ideal for all businesses.
• Establish an Anti-Violence and Workplace Security Policy
This strategy is imperative for establishing an organization's commitment to no tolerance for threats or acts of violence. The policy should not cover threats involving employees but also visitors, customers, contractors, vendors, and other individuals that could pose a threat to the organizational workforce.
The policy should also cover examples of prohibited conduct as well as the scheme for reporting threats or acts of violence and the actions the organization will take as a result of the report.
• Implement Mandatory Safety Policies and Training
Business owners should apply safety policies and training programs for all personnel. These programs should include emergency action plan training, first aid, and harassment prevention training. Companies should ensure that there are accessible first aid kits for minor injuries and ensure these procedures are followed diligently with active participation by all teams. Even if not mandatory, regularly conducting this training is a smart practice.
• Invest in Technology
Enhancing workplace safety is not just about training, policies and communicating, it also requires the tools necessary to efficiently run and manage an ongoing improving safety program. That's where the application of technology can have a major impact.
Smart technology such as safety management software gives management the means to monitor operations from a safety perspective at the click of a button, helping managers and teams take corrective or preventive action to improve workplace safety.
Using mobile apps to perform audits and inspections eliminates the need for paper-based processes and collects this data precisely and quickly. This data can then be presented to administration in dashboards, with email notifications of overdue or missed inspections.
Accidents and incidents can be reported via mobile apps, which allows management to reduce and better manage the number of workplace accidents.
Whether you're working in a distribution center, an oil field, or a manufacturing plant, workplace safety should be a top priority. Employees should strive to continuously improve their safety protocols, minimize not only the risk to their team but also enhance their overall business and bottom line.