Why are employees so worried to report workplace injuries?

Employees across all industries are worried to report any injuries they have sustained in the workplace to their employer because they are worried to make them angry. This was revealed in our recent survey, which found 38% of respondents who had been involved in an incident did not report it because they thought they would be met with anger, or were concerned that nothing would be done as a result.Accident_At_Work_Site_large.jpg

Our research, which questioned 650 people about their experiences, highlighted a major issue facing many employees, who may feel compelled to keep their injuries to themselves for fear of repercussions. There should never be a stigma attached to the reporting of incidents sustained in the line of duty, and it is important that employers act now to eradicate this from their culture.

Duty of care

All employers have a duty of care to members of staff, which means that if any incidents take place, it is their responsibility to deal with it correctly. From a legal perspective, employers must adhere to all health and safety and employment law, along with the common law duty of care. It is also important that they abide by an ethical duty not to cause, or fail to prevent, physical or psychological injury. It is an employer’s duty to fulfil their responsibilities with regard to personal injury and negligence claims.

Requirements under an employer’s duty of care can manifest themselves in a number of different ways, including:

  • Having clearly defined job roles and undertaking risk assessments 
  • Ensuring the work environment is safe 
  • Ensuring members of staff do not work excessive hours 
  • Providing adequate training and feedback on performance
  • Providing areas for rest and relaxation 
  • Protecting staff from discrimination 
  • Consulting staff on issues that concern them

An employer is found to be in breach of their duty of care if they fail to do everything that was reasonable in the circumstances to keep the employee safe. On top of this, employees have responsibilities for their health and wellbeing at work - for instance, they are entitled by law to refuse to carry out work that is not safe.

Employers have insurance policies in place to prepare for eventualities such as these, which are used to pay any compensation payments, so employees need not worry about the financial side of making a claim for compensation.

Looking into the figures

The survey also highlighted that messy workstations and slipping hazards are the most common hazards found in workplaces across all industries. It emerged that 24% of respondents had witnessed messy workstations, while 27% had come into contact with slipping hazards.

Slips, trips and falls are consistently found to be among the most common causes of injury in a variety of workplaces; however, they are also one of the most simple to prevent. This type of accident can be prevented in a few steps:

  • Cleaning up any spillages immediately, or if this is not possible, place a ‘wet floor’ warning sign for employees 
  • Keep walkways free of obstacles, clutter and debris 
  • Cover any cables or cords that obstruct walkways 
  • Ensure filing cabinets and desk drawers remain shut when not in use 
  • Encourage staff to work comfortable, suitable shoes

Health and safety is a matter that businesses should place at the forefront of all operations. Employers can face costly fines for failing to take the safety of their employees seriously, and those that continue to flout regulations are putting lives at risk. It is up to employers to ensure that strict policies are in place to ensure all staff are kept safe when carrying out their daily duties.

How Percy Hughes & Roberts can help

At Percy Hughes & Roberts, our team understand going through a work-place injury can be a stressful and traumatic time. Many people are often apprehensive about possibly bringing a claim against their employer. However, our personal injury team is on-hand to guide you through any potential claim you may have.

Our personal injury team are all fully qualified solicitors with a wealth of experience to ensure you get fully compensated for your injuries and financial losses. You will have direct contact with your own personal solicitor who will regularly update you on the status of your case.

If you would like to contact one of the team, get in touch with our expert accidents at work solicitors today by calling 0800 068 3167 or, alternatively, fill out our online form and one of our advisors will get back to you right away.