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Workplace Falls Increase Business Costs

Of the top ten most expensive workplace injuries, falls take second and third place.

workplace-injuriesThe 2017 Liberty Mutual Insurance Workplace Safety Index ranks the most serious, nonfatal injuries by their direct costs:

  1. Overexertion
  2. Falls on the same level
  3. Falls to a lower level
  4. Being struck by an object or equipment
  5. Bodily reactions
  6. Roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicles
  7. Skip or trip without fall
  8. Caught by/in equipment or objects
  9. Struck against object or equipment
  10. Repetitive motions

One in five worker deaths last year were in construction, with falls being the leading cause, according to the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Meanwhile, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that fatal falls to a lower level accounted for nearly 40 percent of fatal work injuries in the private construction industry.

According to Arbill, a safety consulting company, the leading causes of slip and fall accidents in the workplace are:

  • Slippery surfaces caused by floor cleaning, leaks, or other debris
  • Uneven surfaces caused by protruding nails or boards, uneven carpeting, or holes and depressions)
  • Improperly maintained ladders

OSHA estimates that employers pay nearly $1 billion a week for direct workers’ compensation costs, but there are indirect costs as well, including:

  • Replacement training
  • Accident investigation
  • Lost productivity
  • Repairs of damaged equipment and property
  • Lower employee morale