Our jobs are stressful and busy, and we often don't realize how much is going on around us. Unfortunately, because of this, work accidents happen. Time can slow down in the instant of the accident, making it feel like it's taking twenty minutes to get through it. Unfortunately, people get hurt. Whether it's a slip and fall or a machine caught someone's arm- a lot of people will see things happen and immediately start to panic.
That's a big mistake.
Instead of panicking and acting erratically, here's how to react after a work accident and how to keep yourself and your coworkers safe.
Assess The Situation
There are a billion different ways to react, depending on what kind of injury it was. If the accident was a slip and a fall, try to keep them conscious and look out for signs of concussion-like slurred language and dilated pupils. If their arm was caught in a machine, immediately turn that machine off. Don't try to pull anyone's arm out of something if they're stuck. If someone is impaled or stabbed by something, keep it in. If you pull it out or remove it, you could be letting them bleed out.
Move The Employee If Safe To Do So
If they're not stuck in machinery, and they didn't injure their head or neck, now's the time to move them to a safer location. If they did injure their head or spine, don't try to move them. Please keep them in place and try to keep them calm. Attempting to move or shift someone who had a spinal injury or head trauma could hurt them further.
Help Them Contact Any Help Needed
If the need is there, call an ambulance immediately. Although some companies try to train their employees to call a helpline for work insurance first, their life is more important than that. They can find the best workers compensation lawyer on their own time; right now, you need to ensure they get the medical help they need. If they say they don't need an ambulance and generally seem okay, let them call the work helpline to go through the questions that might lead to them needing to go to a hospital anyway.
Sanitize Machinery If Possible
After an accident, if there was any blood spilled or a biological threat to the workplace from the accident, take the time needed to sanitize everything. This step means taking the time to break down any machinery and ensure every inch of it is scrubbed. Although many may think this sounds like an overreaction, it's vital to ensure the machinery is clean and ready to be used again.
Go Over Safety Protocol
Talk with employees about what went wrong and how workers can avoid that in the future. Don't try to place any blame, and don't badmouth the person who just got hurt. Try to go over the accident with a fine-toothed comb so that others can see how important safety is. Go over how to safely use the machinery, if it's what hurt the worker, and make sure that everyone understands how things should work.