Oct 25, 2018
Personal Injury: How to Protect Your Employees, Customers and Business

{Sponsored} Everyone has heard the story of why coffee cups bear strong warnings of how hot the liquid inside of them is. We all remember when a woman’s coffee fell in her lap after not being secured when she went through a restaurant drive-through. Was that the fault of the establishment that sold her the coffee? Could they predict that she would set it on her dashboard instead of securing it in her cup holder? Probably not, but the restaurant was still sued as a result.

Greenhouses and garden centers have a host of potential hazards. For example, a customer could sue you as a result of an injury they suffered from something common inside your business. Standing water, uneven surfaces, hoses left in the walkway or even plants sticking out into the aisles can be alleged to have caused an accident that results in such an injury.

Your employees can be required to wear slip-resistant footwear that completely covers their feet, but you can’t control what your customers wear. As a result, the myriad of risks is increased by flip-flops, sandals, open shoes and bare toes that are so popular in the warmer months. To this, add metal carts, heavy pottery and thorny plants, and you have a recipe for personal injury.

Prevention is key. Employee training and policies requiring proper footwear is important, as are reminders for them to take great care around heavy-duty equipment. Teach them to prevent puddles from forming to prevent walkways from becoming slick. Make sure that safe tractor driving (and no underage drivers) are always the norm. Tell them to report uneven surfaces to you so you can repair them. Instruct them that returning hoses to their receptacles is always required so no one is injured tripping on the hoses.

Employee injury may trigger a Workers’ Compensation claim. Worse yet, customers can sue the business alleging failure to properly maintain the premises caused the incident to occur.

Unfortunately, lawsuits happen. Partner with the insurer that understands your business so you can be adequately covered in case of such an occurrence.

General Liability and Workers’ Compensation coverage is a must; this protects your business when the unexpected happens. Be prepared to fill out the proper paperwork when an employee is injured, and stress that they must report all injuries. Also report all injuries customers suffer when they come to your attention.

Practicing personal injury prevention is your responsibility as a business owner and instilling personal ownership in the prevention process into your employees will make your business safer for all who enter it.

Hortica® property and casualty coverages are underwritten, and loss control services are provided, by Florists’ Mutual Insurance Company, Florists’ Insurance Company, and Florists’ Insurance Service, Inc., Edwardsville, IL, members of the Sentry Insurance Group. For more information, visit hortica.com. Policies, coverages, benefits and discounts are not available in all states. See policy for complete coverage details.

© 2018 Hortica

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