According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, each year in workplaces across the country, over ten thousand employees are injured while working on or near moving vehicles or other machinery. At some point, the technicians and mechanics can strain themselves at your auto shop.
In this article, there are several ways you can help your business prevent various potential workplace injuries from happening in the first place.
Provide your employees with the proper training
For your employees to be able to work safely, they need to understand what hazards are present in the working environment and how to avoid them. This training needs to be as realistic as possible so your employees can learn from experience and develop a complete picture of the potential dangers.
Since every auto shop will have a different set of equipment, you or your employees can only list some potential hazards for them. You should provide training that allows your employees to consider these factors independently.
Issue protective equipment
Even the most diligent and hard-working mechanics are prone to injury while attempting non-routine tasks. This is because of the unpredictability inherent in automobile repair. For example, most technicians will work on cars that have been dropped or otherwise damaged and are not fit for driving. In these cases, they may need to lift something heavy or move it from one place to another. A wrench can be used to do this, but a pair of gloves can help protect your employees from injuries by absorbing shock and preventing the abrasive metal particles from scratching them.
Be sure you know your liabilities
While there’s no way for you to eliminate workplace injuries, you must understand your employer’s legal responsibilities when such injuries occur. In the United States, the employer is held accountable for workplace injuries when the owner or manager fails to implement proper safety standards or training procedures.
Suppose you want to make sure that your business is protected. In that case, it is necessary to consult a legal expert who can provide legal advice and help you prepare contracts. The consequences of not doing so can be catastrophic if a severe injury occurs.
Offer workers’ compensation insurance
Of all the ways to protect your business from liability, the key is ensuring that your employees have adequate insurance coverage. This is a hugely important consideration since it’s possible that a claim could be made against you as an employer if an employee was hurt while working on one of your vehicles. In addition to insuring against injuries on the job, this will help ensure your employees are compensated for any medical expenses they may incur.
Maintaining a record of your employees’ injuries and accidents is a good way to reduce the risk of serious injuries. This documentation and insurance claims should be kept for at least six years. For this reason, you mustn’t just rely on what your employees tell you; make sure they disclose all the details they know.
You’ll never be able to eliminate injuries, but a lack of training is one of the most significant contributing factors. Therefore, you must consider all possible hazards and develop a comprehensive employee training program covering all potential risks. If an injury happens, you will be prepared to respond in the best way possible.
Keeping track of your employees’ injuries is also important to protect your business from liability claims. Good insurance coverage will make your auto shop safer for everyone involved.