Top 10 Workplace Injuries & How to Protect Your Business

Workplace Injuries

Thousands of employees are injured while working every year, ranging from minor injuries to severe or life-threatening ones. In a recent workplace safety index, it was determined that businesses spend in excess of a billion dollars every week on disabling workplace injuries. These direct costs include worker’s compensation increases, medical expenses, and loss of wages.

As a business owner, it is your responsibility to provide a safe work environment for those you employ. Educating yourself on the most common types of workplace injuries and ways to prevent them is the first step to making that responsibility a reality.

Here is a look at the top ten workplace injuries by costs.

  1. Overexertion from outside sources – $13.8 Billion
  1. Falls on the same level – $10.6 Billion
  1. Falls to the lower level- $5.5 Billion
  1. Struck by object or equipment – $4.4 Billion
  1. Other exertions or bodily injury – $3.9 Billion
  1. Roadway incidents with motorized vehicles – $3.7 Billion
  1. Slip/trip (no fall) – $2.3 Billion
  1. Caught in equipment or objects – $2.0 Billion
  1. Struck against object or equipment – $1.9 Billion
  1. Repetitive motions from micro-tasks – $1.8 Billion

Is your business at risk for workplace injuries?

All businesses risk workplace injuries. But, some industries see a higher frequency of injury according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The five industries that experience the most workplace injuries include:

  • Transportation and warehousing
  • Manufacturing
  • Natural resources and mining
  • Construction
  • Retail

How can a business protect themselves from workplace injuries?

Here are six steps you can take to prevent injuries:

  • Implement a formal safety program.
    Educate new and existing employees each year on the right way to do things. Include procedures on safe lifting, moving heavy equipment or boxes, how to properly stack items, workplace cleanliness expectations, and machine operator guidelines.
  • Require safety attire.
    Goggles, back support harnesses, gloves, hard hats, and ear plugs are just a few pieces of safety attire you can provide or require employees to wear.
  • Maintain order.
    Don’t let equipment, boxes, or clutter block walkways or work areas. Put items where they belong to provide a safe area for employees to perform their daily activities.
  • Add variety to an employee’s routine.
    Change an employee’s routine by dividing tasks among a group of employees. This gives employees more variety and a lesser chance of straining their eyes, ears, or joints.
  • Screen new employees.
    Know what new employees can handle by requiring physicals stating the individual is released to lift ‘X’ pounds at one time. Or test their knowledge of your safety procedures before allowing them on the front line. This assures that all employees are capable before they are in harm’s way or put another employee in harm’s way from lack of knowledge.
  • Maintain equipment.
    Inspect and conduct preventative maintenance on equipment regularly. Continuous monitoring allows you to identify and prevent issues before they turn into an injury. Equipment can include machinery, ladders, scaffolding, and motorized vehicles.

Worker’s compensation insurance

Following these steps will help you minimize workplace injuries, not eliminate them. Protect your business by buying worker’s compensation insurance. A worker’s comp policy pays medical expenses and loss of wages resulting from workplace injuries, so you don’t have to drain your financial resources or face an unhappy employee in court.