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Costs of Workplace Injuries and Accidents

Costs of Workplace Injuries and Accidents

The working environment is never completely risk-free. Entrepreneurs must be aware that it will be difficult for them to avoid all accidents, and these can involve very serious losses – both directly and indirectly. What are the costs of employee accidents and how to minimize potential losses?

In this article you can read about:

  • Accidents happen everywhere
  • Financial costs of workplace injuries
  • Indirect costs of workplace injuries
  • How to prevent workplace injuries to minimise potential costs

Accidents happen everywhere

The most common accidents at work are injuries such as slips, trips, strains and fractures. According to Eurostat data, the above account for up to 75% of all accidents. The employer must be aware that in many cases he will be jointly responsible for the accident as the person who should safeguard the working environment. The common nature of accidents makes it worthwhile to think ahead about their consequences – because sooner or later an accident is most likely to happen.

Financial costs of workplace injuries

The most direct result of workplace injuries for a company is financial. According to statistics, the average direct cost of a company per accident ranges from $1,000 to $20,000. This includes potential hospital bills of the affected employee, therapies, medication, compensation… it all adds up and can put a severe strain on a company’s budget.

Indirect costs of workplace injuries

Another type of costs for a company after an accident of indirect nature. These can be even from 4 to 10 times higher than the direct/financial costs. The indirect costs include, but are not limited to:

  • Loss of productivity
  • Loss of morale among staff
  • Working staff shortage
  • Material damage
  • Equipment damage
  • Building or vehicle damage
  • Potential overtime costs
  • Additional training
  • Additional supervision
  • Loss of company’s reputation

It is important to keep in mind that some of the indirect costs of workplace accidents can be lowered depending on the company’s attitude towards the accident. Especially problems with morale and productivity depend to a high degree on the employee’s perception of their employer’s responsibility.

If the workplace was properly prepared and safeguarded, and an accident was a result of a mistake, then these costs will be relatively low. If, on the other hand, employees think that the employer’s negligence led to the accident, costs will be much higher.

How to prevent workplace injuries to minimise potential costs

These days, in addition to standard safety measures – such as having a safety plan, conducting proper staff training, minimising risks and providing protective equipment, employers can invest in additional layers of protection.

These come in the form of modern technologies which allow for near-instant reaction to workplace accidents. Staff safety and security solutions can help avoid or remedy accidents, and cost a fraction of the potential costs, so it is an investment that pays off.