Any business, with or without a workforce, can become subject to personal injury lawsuits. This means that even if you have a small shop that is managed by you alone, it is possible to get sued for personal injury, irrespective of how unlikely it may seem.
All it takes is a few seconds of shuteye at the wheel by an exhausted driver, and you could be looking at a personal injury lawsuit against your establishment. To prevent such instances from happening in the first place, go through the five tips that can prevent them.
Predict and Eliminate Chances of Workplace Accidents
Although we cannot predict the accidents themselves, we can certainly predict or preempt the possibilities. Figure out the vulnerabilities of your business safety policy and measures, then seal those gaps with adequate implementation of the necessary steps. To do that, however, you will need experienced professionals, such as building inspectors, equipment inspectors, and site safety inspectors.
Review Your Safety Measures Periodically
The step mentioned above should be repeated bi-yearly or at least annually, but there are exceptions. On getting reports of malfunctions or potential safety hazards from a worker or a supervisor, you need to call in for an unscheduled checkup/repair/maintenance, as soon as possible.
“It is indeed a major responsibility of the business or site owner to provide a safe working environment for their employees. If there’s any chance that you may fail in that duty, it’s not a chance worth taking.”
Introduction of New Equipment Should Always be Followed by Mandatory Training Hours
Business owners in the US lose billions of dollars in compensation and on account of accidental damages every year because they decided to skip out on proper employee training before introducing a new piece of equipment in the workplace. In some states, it is even mandatory to get your equipment handlers well trained before introducing any new machinery.
Strictly and Legally Forbid Overworking for Company Drivers
One estimate puts the total amount of money lost every year by US businesses at $60 billion/year, on account of workplace-related driving accidents. Employ the following to reduce the chances of that happening.
- Every company vehicle must be regularly checked and maintained with timely repairs
- The vehicles must also be soft checked before each journey
- Overworking a driver is illegal, so install driving time meters with fatigue detection, GPS, and alert systems in company vehicles
- Try to reduce overtime and double shifts by increasing your employee strength
Insurance is a Must
It’s illegal to operate a business without Workers’ Compensation Insurance in most states, but you will also need general liability insurance and property insurance as a business owner, to protect the company financials against personal injury lawsuits.
Precautions are, of course, the first line of defense against personal injury lawsuits, but if you have already been sued, lawyer up immediately. Do not call the individual who filed the lawsuit, and don’t try to negotiate with their lawyer on your own because that’s what your personal injury defense lawyer is supposed to do for you.
Interesting related article: “What is an Occupational Injury?“