P&C Pro-File – Construction – September 2013

P&C - Construction

Are Your Employees Misclassified?

Take a closer look at how you’ve classified members of your workforce, as the Department of Labor (DOL) may soon crack down on employers who’ve improperly classified their workers.

Many construction employers make the mistake of classifying workers as independent contractors, when they are actually employees. Misclassifying your employees could bring severe financial consequences; you may be responsible to pay years of unpaid tax withholdings, Social Security contributions and unpaid workers’ compensation, to name a few.

For additional information on employee versus independent contractor status, contact GRBM  today.

4 Simple Ways to Help Workers Stay Safe in Highway Work Zones

More than 100 construction workers are killed each year in highway work zones, according to data from the Federal Highway Administration. Many of these tragedies are the result of workers being struck and killed by passing motorists.

There is inherent risk during any road work, and there is no magic formula that will prevent all accidents, but you can dramatically reduce the likelihood of a crash by following a few basic safety rules.

To create a safer work zone this season:

  • Ensure workers wear high-visibility apparel at all times, especially during dawn or dusk hours, so drivers can see them
  •  Use temporary, glare-controlled lighting during night work to increase visibility for both workers and drivers
  • Post speed limits around the work zone. If using a radar-activated changeable message sign, make sure messages can be easily understood by drivers
  • Establish and enforce “work site rules” for how workers should work safely around traffic

For more work site safety materials, contact GRBM.

Survey Finds Pre-work Safety Meetings Lacking

You can never address safety too often; unfortunately, an alarming number of contractors aren’t taking the time to do this. According to recent survey results from law firm Fisher & Phillips, 88 percent of contractors do not discuss specific safety issues regarding the day’s tasks at pre-shift meetings with their workers.

The survey of more than 100 contractors also found that most contractors agree with OSHA in that employers should focus on leading indicators and behavioral factors that play a big role in preventing accidents.

GRBM has a variety of safety resources, including presentations, videos and talking points for supervisors, to help you regularly promote safety to your workers.

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