In an earlier blog (July 19, 2017) we talked about how safety meetings can LOWER YOUR INSURANCE COSTS by earning you UP TO 25% DISCOUNT off your first year’s general liability premium, if you are new to our program, or at your next renewal.  But what if you don’t have a formal loss control program?  You may be doing a lot to ensure a safe jobsite, but how do you prove it?  Then too, you may have been intending to get around to developing a formal program, but the pressure to finish your current project ate up all your time. 

If you have a formal loss control program, great!  Give us a copy of your guidelines and tell us a little about how its going and we’ll help you SAVE MONEY on your general liability.  But, if you don’t have anything in writing, or if you’re still struggling to get started, we have some tips that you might find helpful.  We call them THE 7 BASICS.  These suggestions are intended as a rough guideline to help you get started in establishing a loss control program.  If you already have a program, it is hoped THE 7 BASICS will help you review your procedures and make any improvements necessary.

  1. Establish a loss control policy and who will be in charge of it.
    • To be effective, a loss control program should share responsibility with a person or persons with authority to act.  This person must be known to have the backing of the owner of the business and of senior management.
    • Good loss control practices should be an integral part of the job; not something that is done separately or as an additional step.  Such programs are destined to fail because they add time and cost to the construction process and, therefore, will quickly fall into disuse.
  2. Assign responsibility, authority and accountability.
    • It is suggested that accountability need not only be punitive.  Rewards for compliance with safety practices, innovative suggestions to promote safety as well as for periods of time on the job without accidents can be a great way to involve all employees in safety consciousness.
  3. Maintain safe working conditions.
    • This is the hard part.  Can a loss control program stand the test of time?  One vital suggestion here is to establish periodic meetings.
      •  Attendance should be required with rollcall records maintained.
      • An agenda of 2 to 3 items is recommended for each meeting to keep the meeting on track and to provide a sense of progress and direction.
      • The number of meetings is not as important as their quality.  However, it is usually wise to meet at least once each quarter.
  4. Establish training for loss control.
    • Things change.  Jobsite locations, the impact of weather conditions, the use of unskilled or temporary workers, types of homes being built, other logistical concerns are just a few of the many constantly changing elements of many active jobsites.  The need to educate new employees and subcontractors in company policy; all these things challenge every builder to continuously update and implement changes to his / her loss control program.  This means training must be ongoing.
  5. Set up procedures for accident reporting and investigation.
    • What needs to happen when there is an accident?  What are the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th things that have to happen to minimize further injury or damage?  After an accident, what is the procedure to review what just happened so causes can be identified and future incidents prevented, or at least minimized? 
      • The best loss control program can come to nothing without a system to report and investigate accidents.
  6. Create and maintain first aid procedures.
    • Assume there is no such thing as a minor injury.  Providing quick and appropriate first aid can prevent a little injury from turning into a much worse one.
  7. Develop a culture of safety through employees’ acceptance and involvement in their own accountability.
    • Your goal should be to instill in every employee and subcontractor an attitude of safety.  The best loss control program is the one that is second nature to all who are involved in it. 

Next month we’ll focus on the 5 AREAS where you have the most risk for accidents. 

If your general liability is coming up for renewal, or if you’d like to know what the RWC Insurance Advantage can do to help SAVE YOU MONEY on your next policy, give us a call at 866-454-2155, or visit us on the web at www.RWCInsuranceAdvantage.com.

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