Viewing posts categorised under: Agribusiness

Fall Prevention Awareness Week is September 21-25, 2020

Posted September 14, 2020 by Erin

Preventing Slips, Trips and Falls

Fall Prevention Awareness Week is September 21-25, 2020

Sometimes all it takes is one time slipping on a wet surface to cause a debilitating injury to a worker’s back, a broken bone, or worse. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 791 work-related fatalities and 240,160 non-fatal work-related injuries due to slips, trips and falls in 2018.[1]

Once an injury occurs, a worker is typically unable to work for an extended period of time, potentially meaning less income. There could also be significant medical expenses and decreased ability to conduct your normal daily activities, making it difficult to take care of your loved ones.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  • ONLY WEAR STURDY, WATERPROOF WORK BOOTS  This helps keep your feet dry and prevents them from slipping off most surfaces. NO flip flops, slides, or sandals.
  • MAKE SURE YOUR WORK BOOTS HAVE GOOD NON-SLIP TREAD This helps give you good traction in adverse weather conditions and prevents slips/falls. If your work boots are old, chances are good the tread is worn down and it’s time for a new pair.
  • MAKE SURE YOUR WORK BOOTS HAVE A STEEL SAFETY TOE  This helps prevent injuries from bumps or items accidentally dropped on your foot.
  • REVIEW YOUR SURROUNDINGS  Look around you to see if there are any potential hazards, like potholes, water/snow on the ground, etc.
  • USE THREE POINTS OF CONTACT  When getting in or getting out of your truck or trailer, make sure you have either two hands and one foot, or two feet and one hand making contact with the truck the whole time. This helps ensure stability.

If you follow these basic guidelines you will drastically reduce the chance of a slip, trip or fall type of accident. Your employer and your family will also appreciate your efforts to work safer and come home happy and healthy at the end of the workday.

If you should have any questions regarding the information above or would like to discuss other safety topics, please don’t hesitate to contact Cline Wood at ph #888-451-3900 or email: safetrucking@clinewood.com.

 

[1] Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, A look at work injuries, illnesses, and fatalities on Workers’ Memorial Day on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2020/a-look-at-work-injuries-illnesses-and-fatalities-on-workers-memorial-day.htm (visited August 28, 2020).

Changes in Missouri Punitive Damages Law

Posted July 29, 2020 by Erin

Missouri’s governor recently signed into law important changes which will provide for a more even playing field in personal injury actions in this state.  The changes affect actions filed on or after August 28, 2020.

Punitive Damages

Several important changes were enacted to the relevant statute:

  • Standard of proof: “clear and convincing evidence”
  • No punitive damage award where only nominal damages are awarded
  • Evidentiary burden: evidence of intentional conduct or deliberate and flagrant disregard for the safety of others
  • Definition changed: punitive damages now only to punish “malicious conduct or conduct which intentionally caused damage to the plaintiff” or “deliberate and flagrant disregard for the safety of others.”
  • No longer includes “willful and wanton” conduct or conduct showing “complete indifference or conscious disregard for the safety of others.”

The new version of the statute also significantly raises the bar for punitive damages against an employer:

  • Plaintiff must plead and prove that employer/supervisor authorized the wrongful conduct, employer was reckless in employing an unfit agent, or employee was a manager acting in course and scope of employment
  • If employer admits liability for actions of an employee in a claim for compensatory damages, discovery is limited to employment records or documents related to the employee’s qualifications

The revised statute also imposes procedural hurdles which will limit the plaintiff’s ability to utilize a punitive damage claim for unwarranted discovery purposes:

  • No punitive damage claim allowed in the initial petition
  • Plaintiff must seek leave to amend to add punitive damages claim at least 120 days before the pre-trial conference
  • Plaintiff’s request must be supported by affidavits or other documentation which shows that reasonable juror could find clear and convincing evidence that punitive damages were justified; defense can respond with documentation defeating plaintiff’s claim. Court must rule within 45 days.
  • No discovery on punitive damages until after court allows pleading to be amended

 

Legal update originally published 7/10/20 by Roberts Perryman PC. Visit their website for more information at www.robertsperryman.com

New Aid Package Replenishes Paycheck Protection Program

Posted April 24, 2020 by Erin

President Donald Trump today signed a $484 billion coronavirus relief package, the latest effort by the federal government to help businesses devastated by the pandemic. The Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, which was approved by the Senate earlier this week and overwhelmingly passed by the House yesterday afternoon, will inject $310 billion back into the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

The latest relief comes less than a month after the CARES Act allocated $349 billion to the PPP, a federal forgivable loan program created to help small businesses keep workers employed during the coronavirus crisis. The Trump administration and lawmakers have been under pressure to replenish the program after it quickly ran out of funds and was forced to shut down last week.

About $60 billion of the new PPP funding has been specifically earmarked for community lenders, smaller banks and credit unions to help smaller businesses that don’t have established relationships with big banks, and had a harder time obtaining loans in the first round.

The new package also includes $60 billion more for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, a separate SBA program offering economic relief, $25 billion for expanded coronavirus testing, and $75 billion for hospitals.

The SBA says that it has already approved over 1.66 million PPP loans, and nearly 27,000 EIDL loans and over 750,000 EIDL advances. As with the first round, these new funds are expected to run out quickly. Therefore, businesses that wish to take advantage of the PPP or EIDL programs, should act immediately. Borrowers may use this tool to find a nearby SBA lender.

Source: Lancer Insurance Company | Click HERE to view Lancer’s video “Applying for the Paycheck Protection Program”

Click HERE to watch a playback of MMA’s CARES Act Overview Webinar

Click HERE to view all of MMA’s Coronavirus Resources

Team Beef Stays Engaged Despite Pandemic

Posted April 23, 2020 by Erin

Team Beef Virtual Run & Ride – FREE event

Have your race schedules been impacted this Spring? Are you looking for opportunities to put your training to good use and remain active? Join the Team Beef community from across the country to get outside and move during this time of social distancing. Show how you’re #FueledByBeef by participating in a virtual run or bike ride.

Here’s how you can participate:

  • Register for a running or cycling activity and distance of your choice at no cost.
  • Complete your run or ride between April 1 and May 3 tracking your activity using a GPS-enabled device (phone, watch, etc.)
  • Distance options include a 5k or 10k run/walk, Half Marathon or Marathon run; 10, 25, 50, or 75-mile ride.
  • Upload a public photo of your activity to Facebook, Instagram, and/or Twitter tagging Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. and your State Beef Council. Use the hashtags #TeamBeef and #FueledByBeef.
  • Optional: Join the Team Beef club on Strava to track your run or ride with Team Beef athletes from across the country.

The essential nutrients found in beef, like protein, iron, zinc and B vitamins, provide our bodies and minds with the fuel we need at all stages of life to be the strongest version of ourselves. Click here to learn more about how beef’s nutrients, along with a healthy lifestyle, work to help build muscle and mental strength.

 

REGISTER HERE: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/team-beef-virtual-run-and-ride-registration-101231939456

FAQs:

Are there ID or minimum age requirements to enter the event?

Anyone is eligible to participate. Minors (under 18 years of age) should participate under the supervision of an adult.

How can I contact the organizer with any questions?

Email your local State Beef Council with any questions.

What’s the refund policy?

No fee is required to participate in this event.

Funded by the Beef Checkoff.

OSHA Releases Guidance Determining COVID-19 as a Recordable Illness

Posted April 17, 2020 by Erin

Last Friday, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued an enforcement guidance with details on how employers should record occupational illnesses, specifically cases of the COVID-19. In areas where there is ongoing community transmission, employers – other than those in the healthcare industry, emergency response organizations and correctional institutions – may have difficulty determining whether workers contracted COVID-19 due to exposures at work. In light of those difficulties, OSHA is exercising enforcement discretion in order to provide certainty to the regulated community.

OSHA has determined that under its recordkeeping requirements in 29 CFR § 1904.5, COVID-19 is a recordable illness and employers are responsible for recording cases of the disease, if: the case is a confirmed case of COVID-19, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; the case is work-related, as defined by 29 CFR § 1904.5; and the case involves one or more of the general recording criteria set forth in 29 CFR § 1904.7.

The American Feed Industry Association expects that it will be difficult for companies to determine whether a case of COVID-19 is work-related as defined by 29 CFR § 1904.5. However, until further notice, OSHA will not enforce 29 CFR § 1904 to require other employers to make the same work-related determinations, except where:

  • There is objective evidence that a COVID-19 case may be work-related. This could include, for example, a number of cases developing among workers who work closely together without an alternative explanation; and
  • The evidence was reasonably available to the employer. For purposes of this memorandum, examples of “reasonably available evidence” include information given to the employer by employees, as well as information that an employer learns regarding its employees’ health and safety in the ordinary course of managing its business and employees. This enforcement policy should help employers focus their response efforts on implementing good hygiene practices in their workplaces and otherwise mitigating COVID-19’s effects, rather than on making difficult work-related decisions in circumstances where there is community transmission. If it is determined that a case is work-related, COVID-19 is a respiratory illness and should be coded as such on the OSHA Form 300. Because this is an illness, if an employee voluntarily requests that his or her name not be entered on the log, the employer must comply as specified under 29 CFR § 1904.29(b)(7)(vi).

This memorandum will take effect immediately and remain in effect until further notice. This guidance is intended to be time-limited to the current public health crisis. Visit OSHA’s webpage frequently for updates.

 

Article Source: Kansas Grain and Feed Association. Originally Published by the American Feed Industry Association

DOT Audits are still being conducted remotely – How can you prepare?

Posted April 10, 2020 by Erin

In spite of the almost universal shutdown of our national economy, the FMCSA, and Texas DPS, are still actively conducting regulatory audits. Fortunately, as of right now, all audits are being conducted remotely via email and phone calls. That does not eliminate the seriousness of the audit, but it does relieve you of the added pressure of having a government regulator sitting in your office for a week.

So, what do you do if you receive notice of an audit?  The following steps have proven to be an effective response framework for most motor carriers.

 

  1. Organize Your Audit Response Team

Get your most effective team members organized to manage the audit response. This team should have clear authority from senior leadership. Senior leadership should communicate with any and all department heads to clarify the purpose and role of the audit response team in assessing and responding to the audit. This is not the time for departmental silos, compartmentalization of information, or managers being territorial.

 

  1. Facts are Critical

The audit response team should be focused on gathering facts. Your HOS records for the past 6 months are what they are. But, you must know what they are. Discover the truth within each area of your operations with compassion and empathy toward coworkers, but do not let the hurt feelings push you away from accurately assessing the current state of your business operations.

 

  1. Free Up the Audit Response Team

Senior leadership needs to clear other non-critical responsibilities from the audit response team so they can be present and available to effectively respond to the auditor.

 

  1. Take Ownership

We will respond to the audit findings through a high-quality Corrective Action Plan. However, senior leadership needs to take absolute ownership for those findings. Great leaders do not point fingers.

 

  1. Be Present for Audit Opening and Closing

If the audit is serious, you may need to postpone your business trips and your golf outings. It is most important for you as a leader to be present for the audit opening and closing if it is an on-site Compliance Review.  This is when real leadership is manifested.

 

For more information or if you have questions, please reach out to your Cline Wood, a Marsh & McLennan Agency representative.

CVSA Brake Safety Week

Posted September 16, 2019 by Erin

“The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) Brake Safety Week is scheduled for Sept. 15-21. Throughout that week, enforcement officials will conduct roadside safety inspections on commercial motor vehicles throughout North America. Vehicles with critical brake violations, or other critical vehicle inspection item violations, will be restricted from traveling until those violations are corrected. Vehicles without critical vehicle inspection item violations are eligible to receive a CVSA decal indicating that the vehicle passed inspection.” ¹

Many states start these inspections early and run later than the announced event date to work with inspector’s hours, facility hours and to accomplish several thousand inspections. We also know that tools used to normally by-pass the scale for carriers with Green/Pass CSA SMS Scores are turned off thus bringing more tractor trailers through the scale house for inspection.  Other states select designated highways in which they will assign numerous state troopers to work multiple sections pulling tractor trailers over to ramps for road side inspections

 It seems like we finish one inspection focus just to be followed by another.  Though the official violation counts and OOS data from some of the 2019 inspections are not in yet, it is still alarming to see the counts of violations being found, whether out of service or not, when we always know to expect these inspections each year.

 As safety advocates, most of us work with our state troopers numerous times a year at the scale houses or through our safety organizations where we can visualize and learn what they are finding during inspections. “During this year’s Brake Safety Week, inspectors will be paying special attention to brake hoses/tubing. While checking these brake system components is always part of the North American Standard Inspection Program, CVSA is highlighting brake hoses/tubing as a reminder of their importance to vehicle mechanical fitness and safety.” ¹

“Routine brake system inspections and component replacement are vital to the safety of commercial motor vehicles. The brake systems on commercial motor vehicles are comprised of components that work together to slow and stop the vehicle and brake hoses/tubing are essential for the proper operation of those systems. Brake hoses/tubing must be properly attached, undamaged, without leaks and appropriately flexible. Brake hoses/tubing are an important part of the braking system so when they do fail, they can cause problems for the rest of the braking system.

“We all know how important a properly functioning brake system is to vehicle operation,” said CVSA President Chief Jay Thompson with the Arkansas Highway Police. “All components of the brake system must always be in proper operating condition. Brake systems and their parts and components must be routinely checked and carefully and consistently maintained to ensure the health and safety of the overall vehicle.”

Out-of-adjustment brakes and brake-system violations represented 45 percent of all out-of-service vehicle violations issued during last year’s three-day International Roadcheck enforcement campaign. And, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) 2018 Pocket Guide to Large Truck and Bus Statistics, brake-related violations accounted for six of the top 20 most frequently cited vehicle violations in 2017.

The goal of Brake Safety Week is to reduce the number of crashes caused or made more severe by faulty brake systems on commercial motor vehicles by conducting roadside inspections and identifying and removing unsafe commercial motor vehicles from our roadways.” ¹

Hopefully you are well ahead of this reminder and have decided to reduce your odds in becoming a statistic in these inspections. Remember to keep your entire company involved, accountable and ready for these inspections and the daily safe operation of the fleet. Many of our clients have added additional pre-maintenance programs to their fleet to not only combat these inspections but to reduce road repair costs. Often times road repair costs are 3 to 4 times of that in your own facility or with your selected vendor.  Many have also taken advantage of trailer pool locations and created the time to accomplish repairs and inspections to help avoid breakdown and prevent inspection violations.

What a great accomplishment it would be to have our clients’ teams show either “No Violation” inspections or a major reduction in all inspection violations affecting your CSA SMS scores for the next two years.

 

Brake Safety Week is part of the Operation Airbrake Program, sponsored by CVSA in partnership with FMCSA and the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators.

 

Source: ¹ Brake Safety Week is Sept. 15-21 (June 18, 2019). Retrieved from: https://www.cvsa.org/news-entry/2019-brake-safety-week/ , accessed 9/6/19.

 

Safely Loading and Unloading Grain Trailers

Posted September 13, 2019 by Erin

Safely Loading and Unloading Grain Trailers

Transporting and unloading grain at grain facilities may seem like the easiest part of the job, until you realize that some of the drivers may be farm workers who get little experience except during harvest season each year. Here are several safety tips to help keep both your experienced and seasonal drivers safe during this harvest season.

General Grain Transportation Safety Tips

  • Be aware of and avoid contact with all overhead electric wires when moving grain transport equipment.
  • Stay out of loaded grain wagons, truck beds and trailers in order to avoid potential grain entrapment and suffocation hazards.
  • Do not allow children to play in or near grain wagons, trucks or trailers.
  • Use extreme caution when backing grain transport equipment in order to prevent running over bystanders or other workers.
  • Use extreme caution when traveling on public highways.  Use hazard flashers as necessary to alert other drivers of your presence.
  • Be extremely careful when field loading and operating trucks and trailers near ditch banks.  At a minimum, stay away from the edge of the ditch bank a distance equal to the depth of the ditch.
  • Avoid rollovers by keeping grain evenly distributed, and slowly travel up and down the slope on hilly fields.
  • When the loaded tractor trailer rig reaches the mill or storage, it may be pulled across a grated dump.  In the case of a hopper bottom trailer, each section of the trailer may be emptied by opening a sliding gate and letting the grain from that section flow by gravity into the dump grating.  Then the truck will be pulled up to empty each segment of the trailer.
  • The truck may be pulled across the dump for weighing and then be backed up to the dump grate after weighing in.  The driver will not be able to see behind the trailer and may need a “spotter” or ground guide to back safely onto the dump, so as not to endanger dump personnel.
  • If the trailer of the truck is not a hopper bottom, the entire truck (both tractor and trailer) may be raised by a lift to an angle sufficient to allow the grain to flow from the rear of the trailer into the grated dump until the trailer is empty. The lift is then lowered to level, the truck is driven off the dump and returns to the field to be refilled and the trip to the mill is repeated.
  • Safety in the truck loading, transporting, unloading and return phases of the hauling operation cannot be overstated.  Operators should be   cautious during the transition from field roads to public roads, stops, starts, foot traffic during loading in the field and unloading at the mill because each phase has its unique safety hazards.
  • Although many of the drivers of hauling rigs may be owner operators and have many years of professional experience in over the road operations with large loads, some may be farm workers who get little experience except during harvest season each year. Caution and practice to build familiarity with the equipment and extensive training in the specifics of transporting grain should be seriously considered before allowing inexperienced workers to operate this equipment. ¹

Grain Trailer Safety Tips

  • Make sure the trailer is in good operating condition, including all required lights.
  • Never overload the trailer or the tow vehicle.  Always refer to manufacturer’s specifications for details and limits when in doubt.
  • Make sure about 60 to 65 percent of the total load is placed in front of the trailer axles. Proper weight distribution affects how well the trailer “follows” the tow vehicle. It also affects the traction and “steer-ability” of the tow vehicle. When properly loaded, the rear of the tow vehicle should “squat” down a little. Too much “rear squat” and too much front lift of the tow vehicle indicates the trailer load is too far forward. On the other hand, lifting of the rear of the tow vehicle indicates the trailer load is too far to the rear.
  • While loading the trailer, remember to set the tow vehicle brakes and to chock the wheels. This is important to prevent tipping and movement of the trailer during loading.
  • Make sure that load will not fall from the trailer or move within the trailer during transportation.
  • If using tarps, protect ropes and straps from sharp edges or corners on the load; these serve as wear points and locations of failure.
  • Secure tarps so wind cannot get under the front edge of the tarp. This will prevent the low air pressure at the rear of the load from lifting the tarp. Avoid flapping as it leads to tarp damage which can reduce its capacity to protect/contain the grain. ¹

 

Source: Sadaka, S., & Johnson, D. M. (n.d.). On-Farm Safety for Grain Wagons, Semi-Tractor Trailers and Trailers. On-Farm Safety for Grain Wagons, Semi-Tractor Trailers and Trailers. University of Arkansas, United States Department of Agriculture, and County Governments Cooperating. Retrieved from https://www.uaex.edu/publications/pdf/FSA-1065.pdf

 

Fall Prevention Awareness Week

Posted September 13, 2019 by Erin

Fall Prevention Awareness Week

This year we refocus our attention on slips, trips, and falls during the week of September 23-29.  According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), most incidents in general industry involve slips, trips, and falls. Such incidents cause 15% of all accidental deaths, and are second only to motor vehicle accidents as a cause of fatalities1.  Slips happen when there isn’t enough friction or traction between a person’s feet and the surface they are walking on. Common causes of slips include walking on wet or oily surfaces, loose or unanchored mats, and flooring that lacks the same degree of traction in all areas.

Trips happen when a person’s foot strikes an object, causing them to lose balance. Workers trip due to a variety of reasons, including clutter in walkways, poor lighting, uncovered cables, drawers being left open, wrinkled carpeting or rugs and uneven walking surfaces.  Common areas of slips and trips include offices, shops, public walkways, parking lots, and steps.

Falls occur after someone has slipped or tripped and they tumble to the ground or to a lower surface.  OSHA notes that the majority (67%) of falls happen on the same level resulting from slips and trips. The remaining 30% are falls from a height such as from a trailer floor, loading dock, a ladder or elevated walkway ¹.

Now here are some great tips on how to prevent these accidents from happening:

“1. Wear proper footwear.

This tip is simple enough, but is often overlooked. Encourage your team to wear comfortable, fitted footwear that has enough traction on the bottom.

2. Create traction.

It doesn’t take much for the ground to become slick, especially on sloped and smooth surfaces. Using anti-slip mats and tape can help to add traction when materials like dust and grease cannot be cleaned up or otherwise removed.

3. Keep it clean.

A clean workplace is usually a safe one too! Take the time to pick up boxes, ropes, and cords, and clean up spills to keep workers on their feet. This is especially true in work areas and in aisles.

4. See accidents before they happen.

Poor lighting in basements and stairways can cause anyone, at work or home, to misstep and trip. Adequate lighting makes it easier to avoid hazards (and also reduced eye fatigue). At home, leave a porch light on when leaving in the evening. You’ll be rewarded with a well-lit entryway when you return later that night.

5. Block off temporary trip hazards.

Use barricade tape, cones, and other floor safety products to restrict access to areas that present temporary slip, trip and fall hazards.

6. Mark out clear passageways.

Use floor marking tape to show where walkways are and that these areas should be kept clear. Tape out areas around swinging doors and stairways to help others avoid these hazards too.

7. Post safety signs to remind everyone of hazards and policies.

Posting the right safety signs will help to alert workers of trip and fall hazards, remind them to check ladders and scaffolding, and alert them to your policies for a clean workplace.

8. Gear up with the right PPE.

Fall arrest systems are important and essential parts of any fall prevention plan. Remind workers to wear the right PPE with OSHA compliant fall protection signs.

9. Inspect first, climb second.

Before you climb a ladder or scaffolding, inspect your set-up. Inspections require a critical examination from someone properly trained. If a ladder or scaffolding is in bad condition, tag it for repair or removal so no one will accidentally use it.

10. Train every employee to recognize and avoid slip, trip, and fall hazards.

Like any other safety hazard, slips, trips, and falls can be highlighted during safety training. Make sure that everyone can recognize and avoid slip, trip, and fall hazards and that they use PPE correctly when necessary.” ²

 

Additional Resources:

Inspect Your Footwear Poster

 OSHA’s Top 10 Most-cited Violations

 Prevent Same-level Slips, Trips and Falls

 Flooring Standards and Fall Prevention

  

 

 

Sources:

¹ https://www.osha.gov/oshstats/work.html

2 https://www.safetysign.com/help/h86/11-steps-to-prevent-slips-trips-and-falls

 

How Does Your Safety Program Impact Your Insurance Cost?

Posted August 30, 2019 by Erin

How Does Your Safety Program Impact Your Insurance Cost?

At Cline Wood, a Marsh & McLennan Agency, we are fortunate to work with many great commercial transportation and agribusiness companies as they continually look to improve their day-to-day operations. One of the areas that we focus on in particular is the development of an outstanding safety program within each company.

As many business leaders can attest, when evaluating pros and cons of either implementing a safety program for the first time, or enhancing an existing safety program, cost and budgeting are at or near the top of the list as far as factors to consider. From a cost perspective, it has been proven time and time again that an outstanding safety program helps reduce accidents, which in turn reduces the number of claims reported to the insurance carrier. But how does that translate to insurance cost?

Insurance Cost 101

At a base level, each company pays a certain amount of premium to their insurance carrier in exchange for the benefit of insurance coverage. The amount of the premium charged to each company is based on calculations that typically reflect past losses, estimated future losses, and amount of coverage requested. Along those lines, a frequent metric that helps quantify a company’s losses is called a loss ratio, which essentially is the amount of claims dollars paid out vs. amount of premium received (see below). If the ratio is 1.00 (i.e. 100%) or more, more dollars are being paid out than received, and the insurance carrier is going to have to increase the amount of premium being charged going forward, so the lower the loss ratio the better. Conversely, the less dollars being paid out in claims, the less premium the insurance carrier will need to receive, and the insurance quotes offered will typically be more favorable to the company.

Example:

$(claims dollars paid out) / $(premium received) = % (loss ratio percentage)

When it comes to safety programs and insurance costs, there is still much work to be done. According to A.M. Best, the commercial auto space, for example, hasn’t had a combined loss ratio under 100 since 2010 (Commercial Auto Market Should Improve This Year But Not a Lot: A.M. Best, April, 2019), which continues to drive insurance rates upward as well, especially for those companies who are not proactively developing an outstanding safety program.

Other Positive Effects

In addition to direct effect on insurance cost, there are several other advantages to establishing an outstanding safety program and safety committee that have a positive effect on your company’s bottom line, including but not limited to:

  1. Ability to pursue and secure high-value contracts with more lucrative customers.
  2. Reduction in out-of-pocket expenses due to injury and illness.
  3. Reduction in out-of-pocket expenses due to property damage.
  4. Reduction in your overall injury and illness rate (OSHA Recordable).
  5. Validation of senior leadership’s commitment to a safe workplace.
  6. Increased awareness and appreciation for the company’s safety culture
  7. Invaluable feedback to senior leadership to aid in decision-making. (Ray, 2018)

 Final Thoughts

As you begin, or continue to focus your safety program efforts on items such as growing your safety committee, determining root cause of accidents and providing comprehensive safety training, don’t forget to take time to celebrate the safety successes along the way. Some options include gift cards, cook outs, plaques and social media recognition. These celebrations don’t cost a lot of money, but can have a big impact and help the great people who work for your company understand that you appreciate what they’re doing on a daily basis to reduce insurance cost to the company. (Page, 2018)

For a more in-depth review of safety committee development, we strongly suggest reviewing the following great articles by our in-house Risk Consultants:

Safety Committees: A Valuable Tool for Business Success

Safety Committee Meetings – Tips to Get Started

 

References

Commercial Auto Market Should Improve This Year But Not a Lot: A.M. Best. (April, 2019). Insurance Journal.

Page, S. (2018, October). Risk Consultant – Cline Wood, a Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC. Steve’s Helpful Hints – Safety Committee Meetings.

Ray, K. (2018, October). Risk Consultant – Cline Wood, a Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC. Safety Committees: A Valuable Tool for Business Success.