Ohio BWC Promotes ‘Crash-Free June’

June 4, 2004

Between the years 1992 and 2001, 13,337 workers were killed in motor vehicle crashes on roads in the United States. In Ohio, according to work-related fatalities reported in 2003, 49 workers died due to motor vehicle crashes.

Nationally, crashes are the leading cause of occupational fatalities, accounting for 22 percent of all workplace injury-related deaths. Many work related car accidents can reportedly be prevented by taking the proper precautions. By driving safely, Ohioans can increase their odds of having and injury free day at work.

“When your job requires you to be on the road, a whole new set of safety issues can arise,” stated James Conrad, Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) administrator and CEO. “By enforcing safe practices on the roadway, Ohio employers have one more way to ensure that their employees are home safe at the end of the day.”

On-the-job vehicle crashes are a problem, but certain precautions can help Ohio’s employers reduce the number of roadway crashes including:

* Establishing and enforcing driver safety education programs and policies;
* Diligently maintaining vehicles that are owned by your business;
* Encourage all employees to adhere to Ohio’s traffic safety law, including wearing a safety belt at all times;
* Keeping track of your employee’s driving performance.
* Cutting down on the number of workplace injuries related to vehicle crashes will not only keep your most valuable asset, your employees, safe from harm, but will also keep your workers’ compensation premiums down.

According to the BWC, Ohio employees who find themselves on the roadway should also keep several things in mind. Individuals who work on the road must be alert at all times. When a driver feels tired, he or she should take a break and get some rest before getting back on the road. Ohio workers should stay away from speeding or aggressive driving and yield the right of way to other vehicles when appropriate. And of course, do not drink and drive. Impaired driving should always be avoided.

BWC’s Division of Safety & Hygiene offers several types of training courses on occupational safety and health issues. These classes are open to all employers with an active BWC policy. For additional information about BWC and its services, log on to ohiobwc.com.

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