Even the most innocent looking office can harbour hidden hazards. As an employer, you may presume that accidents will never happen. But the reality is that workplace accidents can happen anywhere. If you run a business, it’s incredibly important to ensure that you do everything to minimize the risk of injury. Here are some of the most common workplace accidents to try to avoid.
By Pava (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons
Slips and trips
Slips and trips are the most common type of work accident. There are various hazards to try and eliminate in a working environment. Examples include slippery floor, poorly maintained flooring and hidden steps. As an employer, you have a duty to ensure that your workplace complies with the latest health and safety guidelines. If somebody reports a broken tile or floorboard, arrange to get it repaired immediately. In the meantime, place a notice to inform people of the damage. If somebody spills something on the floor, for example, it must be dealt with quickly. The floor should be mopped, and a sign should be placed to alert people to the danger. Enlist the services of janitorial companies to keep the workplace spotless.
Sometimes, it’s impossible to prevent falls, but often, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk of accidents. Keep corridors, doorways and stairways clear of obstructions. Mark hidden or uneven steps with warning signs. Grit outdoor pathways if it’s icy outside. Ensure that workers have the relevant equipment and safety gear if they are working at height. Falls from height are particularly common in the construction industry.
Accidents involving moving vehicles
Do you work in a warehouse, a construction site, a farm or on the roads? If so, you may come across moving vehicles on a daily basis. Employers should ensure that safety procedures are in place to protect drivers and those working in the surrounding area. All employees should have training, for example.
Accidents involving falling objects
Do you work in a supermarket, an office, a library or a warehouse? If so, you may be at risk of injuries caused by falling objects. To minimize the risk of injuries, make sure you have effective storage facilities in place and avoid stacking objects too high. If you are removing something from shelves up high, make sure nobody is below you.
If you’re an employer or a business owner, it’s essential to be aware of the risks involved in managing any workplace. You have a legal duty to protect employees by adhering to health and safety guidelines. If you fail to do this, and somebody gets injured, you may be liable for the accident. If an employer is injured and they weren’t to blame, they have a right to claim compensation, and you will have to cover the cost of the payout. To avoid this, make sure you tick all the relevant health and safety boxes from day one.