When you run a business, you need to be able to handle some unforeseen circumstances. Ideally, you’ll never have to worry about an employee injury, but you should have the resources and knowledge to address one regardless. After all, as an employer, it’s your responsibility to take care of your workers.
You should take every step you can to prevent injuries from happening in the first place. Still, there are more than 3,000 workplace injuries a year, so you should know what to do in the event of an accident. If you’re at work and someone gets injured, follow these steps.
Respond to the Injury Immediately
The first thing you should do is to provide the injured employee with any assistance they need. As soon as the accident happens, clear some space, and assess their injury. Depending on the severity, you may be able to address with nothing but a first aid kit or may need to call an ambulance.
You want to react here as fast as possible, both for your employee’s safety and for legal protection. If immediate medical help isn’t necessary, you should still recommend that the employee seeks professional care soon. After you help them, you should also call OSHA and report the injury as quickly as possible if it’s severe.
Investigate the Situation
After tending to the injured employee, you need to review what happened and gather evidence. Talk to any witnesses and look around the site of the accident to determine what caused it. Depending on local laws, you may have to get written testimonies from these witnesses as well as the injured employee.
Make sure you take pictures of the site in question too. You want plenty of photos from multiple angles to make the claim-filing process as straightforward as possible. If you have security cameras, you should take the time to review the footage.
File the Necessary Paperwork
If your employee wants to file for workers’ compensation, you have to provide them with a claim form. Employees have the right to file even if injured out of state, as long as it was work-related. You’ll also have to contribute to this process, so fill out and sign everything that comes your way.
You’ll need to file both a report to the insurance company and an Employer’s Report of Accident form. Make sure you stay in contact with the claims adjuster, employee and any other involved parties. The more you cooperate, the smoother this process will be.
Prevent Future Accidents
After you’ve done everything you can about the injury, it’s time to take action about future ones. Hopefully, you’ll never have any employee injuries, but if you do, you should use it as a learning opportunity. Review the situation to see what went wrong and what you can do to prevent similar accidents in the future.
As you could’ve guessed, preventing workplace injuries is the most effective way to minimise injury-related costs. Institute new policies or hold additional safety training to make sure no one repeats this accident. Creating a safer environment for your employees will both save you money and, more importantly, protect your workers.
Employee Safety Is Everybody’s Responsibility
Your employees should always take steps to make sure that they are working safely. As their employer, though, you are responsible for providing them with the tools and knowledge necessary for doing so. Workplace safety is a team effort, and as the team leader, you have the most responsibility.
When workplace injuries do occur, they are sudden and unexpected. Be sure you know what to do in these events just in case you find yourself in the middle of one. When your employees’ well-being is at stake, it’s hard to be too careful.