Let’s face it; accidents happen. There’s no way that you can avoid them entirely, but it’s still incredibly important that you guard against them where possible, and look to minimise the damage when they do occur. This damage can come in a variety of different ways; you can suffer large legal expenses, potentially government fines, and of course a breakdown in the relationships between you and your employees. Doing everything by the book can save you real headaches in the future, so let’s take a look at the main things that you really need to think about.
Rules are there for a reason
Health and safety legislation is often derided as being overbearing and unnecessary, but it does serve an important purpose, and if you want to make sure you’re doing everything right, then you must follow it. Any negligence on your part could well have seriously damaging effects on a potential court case or prosecution. If you’ve followed the rules, then you’re going to be in a much better position if something happens. These rules can include everything from paperwork, to inspections, to stocking the right equipment.
Common sense is probably your best weapon against accidents in the work place. Aside from following the relevant health and safety guidelines, you should educate all of your employees so that they know how best to avoid accidents. They can happen in just about any kind of workplace; even your average office will have hazards that should be avoided, such as over-used power sockets, trailing wires, and even the hot water in the kitchen. Even the simplest things can be the ones that lead to an accident.
Safeguarding your liability
Finally, in a worst case scenario you might find that an accident occurs, and the employee or another party feels that they have the grounds to sue you for negligence or similar. This can be a serious event for any business, as personal injury claims can be very expensive indeed. Ideally, you should have a sound insurance policy in place that’s designed to protect you in any eventuality. Sometimes this isn’t always possible, and an accident may occur outside those limitations, in which case you do need to make sure that you’ve got lawyers on your side. Be aware that victims of any accidents may well have their own specialised injury solicitors.
To conclude, protecting your business against accidents in the workplace has two main requirements. You need to avoid accidents happening in the first place by following guidelines and using common sense, and you also need to do everything you can to mitigate your liability in the event that something does happen. The first point is of course the most important.