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Common denominators for contractors and construction safety

| May 14, 2021 | Workers' Comp |

In San Jose, workplace injuries can happen in any kind of job whether it involves intensive labor or is relatively sedentary. Despite that, those who work in certain industries have a greater propensity to suffer injuries that prevent them from working, leaving them wondering how they will make ends meet and pay for the medical expenses they might accrue. For laborers, this is especially worrisome.

Contractors who are involved in the fertile business of construction are expected to maintain certain safety procedures to ensure their workers can avoid injuries. It is imperative for these workers and their loved ones to understand what safety implementations should be in place not just to avoid accidents and injuries, but to know what should have been done to prevent them. This could be crucial in a workers’ compensation claim.

Researchers assess common contractor practices that enhance safety

Associated Builders and Contractors issued a report in conjunction with a week dedicated to construction safety. It found certain common denominators with the safest companies. They include measuring safety data to search for areas of improvement and to know what is succeeding in preventing accidents; having top-down leadership from the executive suite all the way down to manual laborers; conducting “toolbox talks” to discuss safety concerns with workers and doing so regularly; ensuring workers are schooled on safety when they are hired; and having a comprehensive substance abuse strategy with testing and intervention.

The study showed that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were notable safety improvements from 2019 to 2020 with incident rates dropping to 2.7 for every 1,000 work hours in 2019 from 3.0 in 2019. For members of ABC who had the best records for safety, the rates remained static at 0.37 in 2019 and 0.41 in 2020.

ABC says that its preventative measures are a better indicator of success rates than BLS because BLS focuses on what happened in the past rather than seeing where issues arose and addressing them. Simply following the five steps to have better workplace safety will yield improvement.

The minor uptick in reportable accidents for those with the best safety records was believed to have been due to scheduling changes from the ongoing national crisis.

When construction injuries occur, workers’ compensation can be crucial

Attention and prevention aside, work accidents will unfortunately still happen. This report shows what contractors are doing to make sure their workers are safe, but it also provides a guideline of missteps from contractors to make the workplace riskier. Seeking workers’ compensation benefits is one of the main strategies workers can use to recover for what they have lost, get medical care and try to return to condition where they can get back on the job. In the aftermath of a workplace accident, people might be unsure of what they must do.

The workers’ compensation process can be complex, especially if a worker is receiving treatment for an injury. There are procedures to follow, filings that must be made, medical reports provided and understanding of what to do if there is a dispute between the worker and the insurance company as to the extent of the injuries. Claim denials must be dealt with head-on.

Finances and medical coverage are worrisome for all workers, but manual laborers are particularly vulnerable. The employer might have been negligent in providing guidance and safety equipment. This can be fundamental when filing a claim.

For advice and representation, it is important to have professional guidance from the start. Consulting with those who understand all areas of workplace accidents and filing claims can be helpful with being approved and maximizing workers’ compensation benefits.