ac·ci·dent (ˈaksədənt): an unfortunate incident that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, typically resulting in damage or injury.
synonyms: misfortune, disaster, tragedy, catastrophe, calamity
Did you know every year 44.5 million Americans, (1 in 7), receive medical attention for non-fatal, accident-related injuries?1 An accident, by its very definition, is an unexpected, unintentional event: A car accident. A playground accident. A workplace accident.
Workplace accidents, in fact, are particularly daunting. Nearly 3 million people in the U.S. suffer nonfatal injuries on the job each year.2 They’re linked with increased physical, financial and emotional stress. Long-term, injured workers tend to experience a decreased standard of living and are more likely to face bankruptcy.3
On the upside, many workplace accidents are preventable.
Companies with an accident prevention program can help manage the number of onsite accidents, keep employees healthier and safer at work and improve productivity. According to Business.com,4 it’s easy and inexpensive to implement a safety program that leaders and workers alike will embrace.
If your employer doesn’t already have a safety program, take these nine smart steps to create a safer workplace:
- Form an interactive team with leaders and employees to share ideas.
- As a group, identify major and minor hazards inside, around and on the grounds of your workplace.
- Propose solutions to address each hazard. Seek input from other employees, too.
- Document all of your safety team’s guidelines.
- Establish several ways to measure safety improvements.
- Give your employees something to shoot for by setting goals.
- Train all associates to understand and appreciate your new safety program.
- Offer incentives and rewards when safety goals are met.
- Periodically evaluate your program standards to determine whether your team should adjust or establish new guidelines.
Employees feel more comfortable and confident—and productive!—in a safer workplace. Start working with your employer to make a change.
1 Injury Facts, National Safety Council, https://injuryfacts.nsc.org/all-injuries/overview/, 2016
2 “U.S. Workers Are Safer, but Not in All Jobs,” Fortune, January 15, 2017.
3 Occupational Safety & Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor,
https://www.osha.gov, July 9, 2018.
4 “Workplace Accidents: How to Avoid Them and What to Do When They Happen,” Business.com, February 23, 2017.