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Work accident prevention plan may be necessary in North Carolina

Taking a temporary break from work is easy to embrace when a person is going on vacation or is voluntarily using paid time off to fulfill a certain commitment. However, not being able to go to work due to a work accident can be hard for an employee to handle due to the potential of suffering lost wages as well as the discomfort caused by the mishap. Workers' compensation can be helpful for a worker in this situation in North Carolina. However, companies may benefit from instituting injury prevention programs designed to keep such a situation from happening in the first place.

A new government plan may require employers to write safety programs based on certain standards. Officials said that implementing a program that works to prevent injuries could decrease worker injuries by up to 35 percent. This could result in billions of dollars in savings each year.

The biggest costs to employers who lose workers to injuries include lost productivity due to having to train their replacement employees as well as the cost of replacing damaged equipment. Other costs include those related to occupational illnesses that may not surface for years or decades following exposure. The time that company officials spend investigating the accident can also be costly. The possibility of making a rule requiring the development of new injury prevention programs at companies will be further explored in the fall of 2014.

Even as they develop new safety programs, companies must buy insurance that helps employees who end up being injured or falling ill on the job. Workers' compensation helps an injured worker to recoup lost wages and to cover related medical costs. In a situation where a work accident does occur at a company in North Carolina, an employee reserves the right to make sure that he or she is getting all of the insurance benefits to which he or she is entitled.

Source: safety.blr.com, I2P2 is on OSHA's radar. Is it on yours?, No author, Jan. 9, 2014

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