As kids, we learn that there are two ways to get in trouble: doing stuff we shouldn’t (giving the dog a haircut) or not doing things we should (letting Fido go hungry).
As a contractor, you can get into serious trouble for not doing something,– under a legal doctrine called “negligent supervision.” For example, if one of your employees injures another person by driving a car recklessly while on company business, you might face a negligent supervision lawsuit alleging that you failed to uncover or ignored the driver’s bad record behind the wheel.
To minimize this risk, experts recommend that you:
Understand your exposure to potential negligence. Although it’s an exaggeration to say that anything you do (or don’t do) might be seen as negligent, certain situations demand particular care Promoting or certifying unqualified employees, failing to fire or discipline them for potentially dangerous behavior, or terminating them without an effective investigation.
Never make assumptions about employees. Just because workers volunteer for additional responsibilities for which they might be unqualified (out of boredom, a wish to please, or to earn a higher wage) doesn’t mean they can actually do the work. Check the employees petitions before assigning the work.
Don’t ignore or minimize signs that employees pose a potential danger to themselves or others. After the tragic shootings at the Washington Navy Yard, the media was filled with evidence of the shooter’s troubling behavior that the authorities evidently ignored. If you’re concerned about an employee’s actions, investigate, inquire, and consult with experts, including the police. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
We’d be happy to review your exposure to negligent supervision claims and how liability insurance can protect you against these allegations.
You’re traveling at 70 miles per hour on a busy highway when you blow a tire. Your car hits an unexpected slick spot and starts to fishtail. Your brakes or steering suddenly lock up.
In these situations, preparedness can literally make the difference between life and death. That means making sure your employees are trained to deal with common driving emergencies by following these guidelines:
A blown tire:
- Hang on to the steering wheel.
- Don’t brake suddenly.
- Ease off the gas and coast until you have control of the car.
- Turn on your hazard lights to warn the drivers around you.
- Steer smoothly.
Skidding or hydroplaning:
- Don’t make any sudden moves, such as braking hard or jerking the wheel.
- Ease off the gas.
- Steer the car’s nose gently in the direction you’d like to go. Make adjustments gradually, as needed, until the vehicle is moving in a straight line.
- Don’t brake – a sudden change in speed could send the car spinning.
- Ease off the gas.
- Turn on your hazard lights.
- Coast to a stop, using your brakes gently once the car slows on its own.
Your brakes fail:
- Move to the right, remembering to signal as needed.
- Because the failure might be temporary, keep your foot on the brakes. If you have ABS, apply steady pressure; If you don’t have ABS, pump the brakes.
- Shift into neutral and apply your emergency brake.
- If possible, use friction to slow or stop the vehicle by running it along a curb or something alongside the road.
For more information, feel free to get in touch with us.
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