Why Have a Workplace Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIP)

Taking risks is a part of running a business, particularly for small business owners. You take risks in product development, marketing and advertising in order to stay competitive. Some risks are just not worth the gamble. One of these is risking the safety and health of those who work for you. This is one reason why you need to have a workplace injury and illness prevention program in place.

ACCIDENTS COST MONEY

Safety organizations, states, small business owners and major corporations alike now realize that the actual cost of a lost workday injury is substantial. For every dollar you spend on the direct costs of a worker’s injury or illness, you will spend much more to cover the indirect and hidden costs.

Consider what one lost workday injury would cost you in terms of:

  • Productive time lost by an injured employee;
  • Productive time lost by employees and supervisors attending the accident victim;
  • Clean up and start up of operations interrupted by the accident;
  • Time to hire or to retrain other individuals to replace the injured worker until his/her return;
  • Time and cost for repair or replacement of any damaged equipment or materials;
  • Cost of continuing all or part of the employee’s wages, in addition to compensation;
  • Reduced morale among your employees, and perhaps lower efficiency; increased workers’ compensation insurance rates; and
  • Cost of completing paperwork generated by the incident.

CONTROLLING LOSSES

If you would like to reduce the costs and risks associated with workplace injuries and illnesses, you need to address safety and health right along with production.
Setting up an Illness and Injury Prevention Program helps you do this. In developing the program, you identify what has to be done to promote the safety and health of your employees and worksite, and you outline policies and procedures to achieve your safety and health goals.

CAL/OSHA IIP PROGRAM

In California, every employer is required by law (Labor Code Section) to provide a safe and healthful workplace for employees. Title 8 (T8) of the California Code of Regulations (CCR), requires every California employer to have an effective Injury and Illness Prevention Program in writing that must be in accord with T8 CCR Section 3203 of the General Industry Safety Orders.

Additional requirements in the following T8 CCR Safety Order Sections address specific industries:

  • Construction—Section 1509;
  • Petroleum—Sections 6507, 6508, 6509, 6760, 6761, 6762;
  • Ship Building, Ship Repairing, Ship Breaking—Section 8350; and
  • Tunnels—Section 8406.

WHAT IS AN IIP PROGRAM?

Your IIP Program must be a written plan that includes procedures and is put into practice.

These elements are required:

  • Management commitment/assignment of responsibilities;
  • Safety communications system with employees;
  • System for assuring employee compliance with safe work practices;
  • Scheduled inspections/evaluation system;
  • Accident investigation;
  • Procedures for correcting unsafe/ unhealthy conditions;
  • Safety and health training and instruction; and
  • Recordkeeping and documentation.

MANAGEMENT COMMITMENT/ASSIGNMENT OF RESPONSIBILITIES

Your commitment to safety and health shows in every decision you make and every action you take. Your employees will respond to that commitment.

The person or persons with the authority and responsibility for your safety and health program must be identified and given management’s full support. You can demonstrate your commitment through your personal concern for employee safety and health and by the priority you place on these issues.

If you want maximum production and quality, you need to control potential workplace hazards and correct hazardous conditions or practices as they occur or are recognized.
You must commit yourself and your company by building an effective Injury and Illness Prevention Program and integrating it into your entire operation.

This commitment must be backed by strong organizational policies, procedures, incentives, and disciplinary actions as necessary to ensure employee compliance with safe and healthful work practices.

They should include:

  1. Establishment of workplace objectives for accident and illness prevention, like those you establish for other business functions such as sales or production, e.g., “ten percent fewer injuries next year” or “reduce down-time due to poorly maintained equipment.”
  2. Emphasis on your staff’s safety and health responsibilities and recognition by your supervisors and employees that they are accountable. Advise your management staff that they will be held accountable for the safety record of the employees working under them, and then back it up with firm action.
  3. A means for encouraging employees to report unsafe conditions with assurance that management will take action.
  4. Allocation of company resources (financial, material and personnel) for:
    o Identifying and controlling hazards in new and existing operations and processes.
    o Installing engineering controls.
    o Purchasing personal protective equipment.
    o Promoting and training employees in safety and health.
  5. Setting a good example. If, for instance, you require hard hats to be worn in a specific area, then you and other management must wear a hard hat in that area.
    If you and your management team do not support and participate in the program, you are doomed to failure from the start. It is especially important for plant supervisors and field superintendents to set a good example.

If you and your management team do not support and participate in the program, you are doomed to failure from the start. It is especially important for plant supervisors and field superintendents to set a good example.

GDI Insurance Agency, Inc. IIP Program

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GDI Insurance Agency, Inc. has created a “Guide To Developing Your Injury and Illness Prevention Program” manual to describe the employer’s responsibilities in establishing, implementing and maintaining an IIP Program. It also outlines steps that can be taken to develop an effective Program that helps assure the safety and health of employees while on the job.

Your GDI Insurance Agency, Inc Broker can help you create and keep your IIP Program free of charge. We then will coordinate this plan with your OSHA compliant safety program, which your GDI Insurance Agency Broker will also help you create, manage and implement free of charge.

These programs besides being required, if used correctly with the help of your GDI broker will help you keep the cost of your workers compensation insurance and modification factor down.

Contact us today at 1-888-991-2929! 

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