Thursday, November 27, 2014

Have a Happy and Safe Holiday

Even for those who truly appreciate the holiday season, it is undeniable that our lives become filled with a range of obligations, which can serve as distractions from our everyday work. While some distraction may be welcome this time of year, we may also become distracted from our basic safety standards, and this phenomenon exists through all levels and departments of a business.

Statistics from several sources, both public and private, show that accidents increase during the holiday season on the roads, in homes and at work. And when they occur at work, it should be of major concern to business owners, executives and management.

In a joint effort by Michigan OSHA and the Department of Licensing, employers were asked to pay particularly close attention to workplace safety. "There is no better way to recognize workers than by protecting their safety through a comprehensive and effective safety plan at every job site," stated Deputy Director Stephanie Comai."When companies include workplace safety and health in their corporate strategy-they not only protect their workers, they also produce better products and add greater value to our economy."

The holiday season is a great time to implement an annual reassessment of safety standards and practices. Serious accidents can be prevented when a concise safety plan has been developed, implemented and practiced, which can lead to several benefits, including lower workers' compensation payments, increased productivity and higher employee morale.

According to Federal OSHA, employers reap a return of $4 to $6 for every dollar invested in workplace safety, and this offsets the $40 billion in direct costs of workplace and jobsite accidents and workers' compensation losses of up to $230 billion incurred each year. In addition, violations for not complying with state and federal regulations may result in thousands of dollars in penalties, even if you were unaware.

New regulations and updated standards may occur with very little notice, but you can keep abreast of the latest news and safety practices by engaging in annual review or training program.  OSHA offers free, confidential consultations for small to mid-size businesses, and variety of resources and programs can be found through private organizations and trade associations, such as the Marble Institute of America (MIA) and the International Surface Fabricators Association  (ISFA).

Once again, please drop us a line with any questions, concerns or statements, and all of us here at wish you a happy and safe holiday season.

Brian Jones, Editor

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