The Cost of a Workplace Rooftop Fall Hits More Than Your Bottom Line
We’ve all heard the news stories about tragic rooftop falls leaving an employee with a tragic injury or worse. Your first thoughts are of the employee and their family. Then the question of whether it was preventable begins to loom. Then you ask, are you making sure your greatest asset – your employees – are protected? What is the real cost of a workplace rooftop injury?
What are the direct costs of a workplace injury?
According to the United States Department of Labor, it has been estimated that employers pay almost one billion dollars per week for just direct workers’ compensation costs. The costs of a workplace accident or injury include:
- Workers’ compensation payments for medical expenses, insurances, health system, pharmaceutical, and recovery costs
- If the injury is a result of faulty fall protection, or no fall protection, OSHA will require you to fix, replace, or install a new system
- If the workplace injury is a result of an employee’s lack of training or compliance, you will be asked to pay legal fees and OSHA fines
What are the indirect costs of a workplace injury?
Indirect costs may not be so noticeable now but may be disastrous to the future of your organization. You must weigh the cost to your company’s morale as the personal trauma of the loss of a co-worker hits your staff. During this difficult time, the company will experience:
- A decrease in productivity
- Costs of finding and retraining employees
- Implementing new corrective measures
- Repairing damaged equipment, tools, or property
- Damage of trust and reputation
Are you protecting your greatest asset?
A misstep in fall protection can be devastating. Planning and training are absolutely necessary to employees who are working and accessing the rooftop. Don't forget to inspect your fall protection on a regular basis, and make sure you are protecting all fall hazards by performing a rooftop audit. Some basic questions for a rooftop audit to begin with are:
- Do any of your employees or contractors access your roof for routine maintenance?
- Do you have skylights installed?
- How do you access the roof?
- Are all the access points protected?
- Are there HVAC systems? Ventilation? Or systems on the roof employees must access?
- Do you have enough or proper lighting if workers need to access the roof at night?
If any of these basic questions ring true to you, then a rooftop safety audit should be in order. Attend trainings like Simplified Safety’s Eliminating Rooftop Fall Hazards webinar, or schedule a free, remote rooftop audit with a Fall Protection Specialist.