In our February 2019 blog we discussed the 7 BASICS of a good loss control program. But, where do you have the most risk for accidents? Obviously, knowing this will allow you to focus your loss control efforts more efficiently. It turns out most businesses have the greatest risk in 5 AREAS.
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 this will help you review your procedures and make any improvements necessary.
- Property – Your office, your jobsites, your land, property of others where you engage in activities related to your business. In other words, anywhere your business takes you (within the coverage territory of the US or Canada).
- Vehicles – While not covered under your RWC Insurance Advantage general liability policy, you should consider the potential for loss arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of vehicles. How many do you own, lease, rent or borrow? Who has access to them? How well are they maintained? How are they used? Are you in compliance with all state and federal regulations? Do employees who use your vehicles have their own auto insurance? Are they properly licensed to operate your vehicles? What do their driving records look like?
- These are just some of the questions you may want to consider.
- Equipment – Do you own, rent or borrow contractor’s equipment? Your general liability refers to equipment that is not subject to motor vehicle laws as “mobile equipment” that is covered by your general liability policy. The damage some types of mobile equipment can cause to the public may be substantial. What is the condition of such equipment? Are the operators properly certified, trained and licensed to operate it? What about their experience? Have they been screened for drugs and alcohol where required? Do you have records to prove this has been done? If you sub out all your heavy equipment needs, are your subs properly insured and do they comply with all laws and regulations?
- Completed operations – The homes you build and the remodeling projects you complete are your work, your completed operations. What procedures do you have in place to ensure quality control? How well do you know your critical subcontractors i.e., your framers, roofers, plumbers, electricians and HVAC subs? Do they have proper training, experience, licensing/certification and insurance? Have you asked about their loss history? What about accidents/incidents they may have had while working for you?
- The general public - Perhaps this should be number 1. The potential for loss in this area is extreme. Anyone from a homeowner filing a claim for alleged construction defects to a passerby tripping over a piece of scrap lumber left at one of your jobsites after hours is a claim waiting to happen. Things for you to consider include, but are by no means limited to, how secure are your jobsites before, during and after regular hours? Are obvious hazards such as falling debris, open trenches, etc., fenced off or otherwise rendered inaccessible? Do you have model homes? How safe is access to them during weekend open houses? Homeowners love to visit their homes while under construction. If you can’t prevent this, what can you do to ensure their safety when they visit? What about other third parties located near your active jobsites or other property you own or control? For example, if you own a number of acres of vacant land, is it posted “no hunting?” Engaged in “green” construction techniques or materials? Are you and your subcontractors fully trained in their use? What do you know about “green” manufacturers? Where do these products come from? Do any renovations? If so, and you renovate a structure built prior to 1978, are you and your subcontractors familiar with the government’s position on lead paint? Speaking of hazardous materials, are you aware of regulations governing asbestos? Keep in mind that you have limited to no coverage under your general liability for losses arising out of “hazmat.”
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.