The safety of employees and the general public should always be the highest priority of any organization. Workplace injuries, illnesses and auto crashes take a tremendous toll on any organization. The prevention of injuries and auto accidents has been an ongoing battle for years. Auto crashes still account for the highest number of severe injuries and fatalities in the workplace and are the leading cause of death from the ages of 5 to 35 throughout the world. Without a comprehensive safety process, injuries, accidents, and fatality trends will go up and down over time with no consistent improvement or solution.
According to the "2015 Motor Vehicle Crashes: Overview," published by the U.S. Department of Transportation, our nation lost 35,092 people in crashes on U.S. roadways during 2015, an increase from 32,744 in 2014. The 7.2 percent increase is the largest percentage increase in nearly 50 years. The estimated number of people injured on U.S. roads increased in 2015 to 2.44 million injured people. The estimated number of police-reported crashes increased by 3.8 percent, from 6.0 to 6.3 million.
In the Bureau of Labor Statistics' "Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries Summary, 2015," it was noted that roadway incident fatalities were up nine percent from 2014 totals, accounting for over one quarter of the fatal occupational injuries in 2015. Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers recorded the most of any occupation.
Many consider auto accidents to be based on chance or bad luck. Nothing is further from the truth. Accidents can be reduced by the elimination of unsafe driving behaviors, and fatal accidents can only be decreased by the reduction of all accidents. While changing these long-entrenched mindsets is not easy, business results will be sustainable once a methods-based safety culture is implemented.