Most U.S. Workplaces Are Getting Safer

Survey finds regular safety meetings are contributing

A survey conducted in March 2006 by The Marlin Company and Occupational Health & Safety showed safety meetings and effective workplace communications are making American workplaces safer than they used to be.

The survey was e-mailed to 4,948 people and generated a 14 percent response rate of 691.

Key findings:

* 74 percent of respondents said that they believe that their workplace is safer than it was a year ago.
* 47 percent have increased the amount of safety training they provide.
* 57 percent of companies surveyed hold monthly safety meetings.
* 60 percent supplement safety meetings with newsletters and other publications.
* 72 percent supplement safety meetings with postings.
* 55 percent of those surveyed said that the injury rate in their workplace has fallen.

The number one safety problem reported was failure to wear personal protective equipment. In order, thehe top three safety problems reported were:

* Failure to wear personal protective equipment
* Slips, trips and falls
* Back injuries from lifting

Seventy percent of respondents reported no increase to their Worker?s Compensation premiums. Of those respondents who hold weekly safety meetings, 67 percent reported a drop in their workplace injury rate. In contrast, 57 percent of those companies holding monthly safety meetings reported a drop in the injury rate.

Of those respondents who said they were "Extremely Satisfied" with their company's safety program:

* 75 percent had increased the amount of training provided to their employees in the last year.
* 77 percent of these respondents supplemented safety meetings with postings
* 81 percent said that worker's compensation premiums had not increased

Thirty-two percent of those respondents who held safety meetings but did not supplement them with newsletters, other publications, or postings reported an increase in worker's compensation costs ranging from 10 to 49 percent. In contrast, only 18 percent of those respondents who supplement safety meetings with newsletters, publications, and postings reported an increase in worker's compensation costs from 10 to 49 percent.

This article was posted in June 2006 on www.ohsonline.com.

This article originally appeared in the June 2006 issue of Occupational Health & Safety.

About the Author

Jerry Laws is Editor of Occupational Health & Safety magazine, which is owned by 1105 Media Inc.

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