Every year, countless workers experience accidents in their places of employment. These accidents can vary from minor mishaps resulting in a mere scratch to severe incidents with long-term implications.
Understanding the necessary steps to take ensures personal safety and contributes to overall workplace safety.
Check for injuries
The first priority after any accident is to check for injuries. If someone needs medical attention, call emergency services right away. Even if injuries seem minor, seek medical evaluation. Some injuries, like concussions or internal damages, may not show immediate symptoms.
Secure the area
After addressing any immediate injuries, secure the accident site. This step will prevent further injuries and protect the integrity of the scene. For example, if equipment malfunctions, turn it off and place a sign to prevent others from using it.
Always report the accident to a supervisor or manager, even if it seems minor. They need to be aware of what happened to address potential safety concerns and begin documenting the incident.
Document the accident
Documentation is vital after a workplace accident. Fill out an incident report detailing what happened, where, when and the people involved. If there are witnesses, ask them to provide statements. Take photos of the accident scene, as they can offer valuable visual evidence of the circumstances.
Follow company protocol
Each workplace will have its own set of procedures after an accident. These might include paperwork, speaking with a safety officer or attending mandatory training sessions. Ensure compliance with these procedures to help improve workplace safety and to avoid potential complications.
Seek ongoing medical care
If injured, be sure to continue any recommended medical treatments or therapies. Not only will this expedite the recovery process, but it also documents the ongoing nature of any injuries related to the accident.
Stay informed and proactive
After addressing the immediate concerns, stay engaged in the process. Attend any required meetings or training. Continue to monitor any lingering issues or safety concerns related to the incident, and always prioritize personal health and well-being.
There are over 2 million workplace accidents annually, and a workplace injury can be a jarring experience. However, by taking methodical steps after the incident, individuals can ensure their safety, meet their responsibilities and contribute to a safer work environment in the future.