Labor Day provides an ideal time to take a closer look at workplace injuries
New data from Pinnacol Assurance finds common themes for certain industries
DENVER, Aug. 30, 2018 — In time for Labor Day, Pinnacol Assurance released new data compiling five years’ worth of claims information on injury causes across four major fields of employment in Colorado. The report shows commonalities in some fields, as well as prevalent causes for frequent injuries within the service/hospitality, professional/clerical, construction/natural resources and healthcare industries.
“Some of the themes we see in the data show that newer workers more commonly incur injuries, or that injuries cluster around certain times of day, which speaks to lack of experience or in some cases fatigue,” said Jim McMillen, director of Safety Services at Pinnacol. “One thing that might surprise working folks is that the most commonly injured body part for people working in both offices and construction sites is the lower back.”
Pinnacol Assurance analyzed five years’ worth of claims data in each of the four industries to help employers create safer working environments by tracking common causes for different accidents. Pinnacol’s findings include:
- A spike in the number of injuries occurs at 10 a.m. across the service/hospitality, construction/natural resources and healthcare industries, possibly pointing to “brain drain” associated with dropping blood sugar levels before lunch at that time of day.
- The most commonly injured body part in both the professional/clerical and construction/natural resources fields is the lower back.
- Seven injuries per day occur in the clerical/professional fields in Colorado.
- Nearly 40 percent of injuries in the healthcare field occur when an employee is in his or her first year on the job.
McMillen said these trends can provide valuable insight to employers who want to provide a safer workplace for their employees and have fewer workers’ compensation claims. Some employers have implemented changes to reduce accidents by modifying daily schedules and increasing training requirements.
McMillen also stressed that while it’s every employer’s responsibility to provide a safe environment for its employees, resources like the Pinnacol Assurance data can be a valuable tool to measure larger trends in the workforce, such as the frequency of workers hurting themselves while lifting or moving heavy objects.
“Our goal is to provide this information to employers with some helpful suggestions, so they can make a plan to keep their employees on the job — whether it’s in an office, on a loading dock, or in a hospital or kitchen,” said McMillen.