On the Job Accidents: The First 30 Minutes

Workers are a company’s most valuable assets. In 2016, nearly three million workers were injured on the job and close to 900,000 of those injuries resulted in time off work. Workplace injuries cost companies more than $60 billion every year… but accidents can happen in even the safest workplaces. If a worker gets injured on the job, do you have a plan? You should. That way when an accident happens, you and your company are prepared.

Safety experts recommend taking these steps in the first 30 minutes after an employee is injured.

  • The most important thing to do is keep the injured worker calm and tell them that you will take care of them. Keeping the injured calm can reduce the stress they are experiencing due to the injury.
  • Don’t ignore the pain the worker is experiencing. That can have lasting effects which can cause greater harm in the long run. You will want to do an initial diagnosis and separate the symptoms from the pain.
  • Once you have made your initial diagnosis, you will want to administer first aid if necessary. What kind of first aid kit do you have available? Not all kits are created equal.
    • Class A kits are designed to handle common workplace injuries like cuts.
    • Class B kits are designed to handle more high-risk injuries such as moving parts, high/low temperature, and chemical exposure.
  • If the initial diagnosis determines that the injury requires more than just first aid treatment, call 911 for help as soon as possible.
  • You will also want to make sure that whatever caused the accident is taken care of so that it can’t injure someone else.
  • If a trip to the hospital is required, make sure that a manager goes with the injured worker. This helps to reduce the stress the employee is feeling. A familiar face can be a big help in stressful situations.

How you and your company respond to a workplace injury affects more than just the injured worker. Perception is everything. Other employees will see how you react to an accident. Making sure the injured worker knows that they are cared for will show other workers how you would react if something happened to them. Knowing that your company has their back will increase morale as well as productivity… which helps your company to reduce costs.