According to the National Safety Council, recent gains in lowering workplace death rates—down 17 percent since 1992—have been undone by the rate of fatalities occurring off the job, up 14 percent in that same period.

Reported in Industrial Distribution, these statistics would indicate that workers are now safer on the job, than they are at home or within their own communities.

Although corporate America has taken action to increase the safety within the workplace, employers have seen an increase in costs associated with worker injury. Injuries that have occurred outside the workplace has resulted in lost wages and productivity, medical and disability payments, and training for new employees.

According to the article, off-the-job injuries accounted for employers losing 165 million days of production time, compared with 80 million lost work days as a result of workplace injuries. Increasingly, businesses are recognizing the value of keeping their employees safe at all times both on and off the job.

In a recent National Safety Council survey of 1,300 companies of varying sizes, the impact of off-the-job safety training has begun to be felt at businesses that have implemented programs. Of those who have implemented off-the-job programs, 58 percent reported reductions in injuries occurring outside of work.

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