Terminology

How to Onboard and Train Employees into a Safety Culture

How to Onboard and Train Employees into a Safety CultureOnce you attract and hire qualified job candidates to your open positions, having an onboarding and training process can help employees work safely and effectively. A continuous onboarding program will help orient employees not only to the functional details of employment, such as appropriate safety procedures, but also to the safety culture of the organization.

Employee retention strategies, such as onboarding and training programs, can also help protect the considerable time and expense invested in recruiting and hiring new employees. According to the Institute for Research on Labor and Employment (IRLE) at the University of California at Berkeley, the costs of replacing an employee are approximately 9% of an employee’s annual wage. In addition to any lost productivity and institutional knowledge, those costs include recruitment, selection, the costs of learning on the job and any separation costs.Read More »How to Onboard and Train Employees into a Safety Culture

Museums and Cultural Institutions: Unique exposures

Goudi Building Museum

Your priceless collections and exhibits are what pull visitors through your doors. But keeping those visitors safe – as well as your employees, volunteers, building and reputation – is what keeps those doors open. Travelers has years of experience working with museums and cultural institutions. We understand your industry. We can help you with your insurance needs – from protecting your fine art collections, to covering your property risks to providing general liability coverage to workers compensation.

Fine art expertise

We offer Museums and Cultural Institutions customized product and service offerings. Our Inland Marine division is a Fine Art market leader that provides flexible solutions for your unique needs:

  • Local underwriting presence with fine art expertise
  • Broad, worldwide coverage at current market value
  • Coverage for exhibitions, loans and items while in transit
  • High capacity for high-value collections
  • On-site risk control consultations to help enhance facility and collection management
  • Dedicated fine art claim team committed to proper claim handling for unique valuable objects
  • Access to our Special Investigations Group who focuses on theft prevention and recovery of stolen property
One company for property exposures

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Environmental Claims

Demolition Contractor – AsbestosDemolition Contractor – Asbestos

  • During the demolition of a portion of a museum, a contractor inadvertently disturbed unknown asbestos that had been contained in the floor tiles. The asbestos contaminated other areas of the museum, forcing closure during the remediation. The demolition contractor was held responsible for the clean-up costs and business interruption.
Drilling Contractor – Raw Sewage
  • A subsurface drilling contractor caused the release of raw sewage into both the soil and groundwater after failing to identify a sewer line before drilling. The clean-up included the excavation of several tons of impacted soil and caused a number of nearby businesses to be shut down for a few days after their basements filled with sewage. Substantial claims for business interruption and clean-up costs were filed.

Drywall Contractor – Mold

  • A drywall contractor was hanging new drywall at a construction project when an employee accidentally drilled through a small water pipe located behind the wall. The drywall contractor did not realize the leak occurred and a substantial amount of mold grew between the walls before anyone noticed. The drywall contractor was held responsible for clean-up of the mold, as well as defense of third-party bodily injury claims.Read More »Environmental Claims

Office Ergonomics – Working Comfortably

Introduction

Office ergonomicsOffice ergonomic improvements involve the application of basic workplace principles to address a worker’s discomfort, chronic pain or repetitive motion injuries. Good ergonomics does not always mean obtaining new furniture and equipment. A large part of ergonomics and comfort involves workstation organization, equipment orientation and work habits. This bulletin reviews equipment and materials that typically are used in a computer workstation and provides suggestions to minimize the risk of injuries.
Musculoskeletal disorders such as tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome can result from improperly positioned equipment that creates stressful working postures. Symptoms can include pain and swelling, numbness and tingling (hands “falling asleep”), loss of muscle strength, and reduced range of joint motion. If you have any of these symptoms, report them to your supervisor as soon as possible. If these symptoms are not treated early, they may result in discomfort in the affected area, chronic pain or injury.

Chair

Chairs can be crucial in preventing back pain, as well as in improving employee performance in office work. As the majority of office workers spend most of their time sitting, a properly designed and adjustable chair is critical.

Features of a good chair:

1. Seat pan adjusts up and down quickly and easily. The chair height is correct when the entire sole of the foot can rest on the floor or footrest and the back of the knee is slightly higher than the seat of the chair.
2. Seat pan should be slightly concave with a softly padded, rounded or “waterfall” front edge. Select alternate seat pan and seat back sizes for large or small employees.
3. Seat back easily adjusts forward and back and up and down, with full lumbar contour. The fullest part of the contour should be positioned in the small of the back, near the waistline.
4. Chair arms adjust up and down and in and out from body. Position chair arms so they support forearms in and near the sides, with elbows only slightly forward from the hipbones. If both features are not an option, eliminate armrests.
5. Five legs or casters for stable support.Read More »Office Ergonomics – Working Comfortably

Negative Review and Freedom of Speech

Are you buying a fair amount of goods or services online and sometimes wish to leave a negative review? Do you always read the ToS fine print? Have you heard of a so called “disparagement clause”?

If you own a business and are exposed to online reviews think twice before adding disparagement clause to your ToS contract, as such can be found as violating rights of free speech.

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Commercial Kitchen Fire Safety

commercial grade kitchen equipmentOperation of a commercial grade kitchen, many safety considerations should be addressed, including food safety, employee and volunteer safety, and fire safety. This blog post addresses the specific issues associated with providing adequate fire safety for your kitchen.

Commercial cooking operations are defined as kitchens that have cooking equipment that produce grease and grease laden vapors. This includes flat grills, char broilers and deep fat fryers. The typical residential range (electric or gas) would not be considered a grease producing appliance. Other equipment, such as ovens, microwaves and steam kettles also fall into the non-grease producing appliance category. The following is information regarding two of the most common types of equipment that produce grease and/or grease laden vapors.

Deep Fat Fryers

Deep fat fryers are a major cause of kitchen fires. Oil can splash and easily come into contact with an open flame from an adjacent piece of cooking equipment, such as a gas-fired range top. A 18-inch clearance must be maintained between the deep fat fryer and the open flame cooking equipment. If a 18-inch clearance is not possible, a vertical steel barrier extending 12 inches above the top of the deep fat fryer or open flame appliance(s) can be used as an alternative means of protection.Read More »Commercial Kitchen Fire Safety

Protect your personal information from online risks

Going online has become part of everyday life – whether for shopping, sending email or paying bills and managing accounts. However, many worry that technology-related issues, including unsolicited emails and unsecure websites, can affect information stored online. The 2013 Travelers Consumer Risk Index shows that 41% of Americans worry about computer and technology issues. These were ranked second among the top five risks causing the most concern. Taking precautions when browsing the Web can help reduce your risk of a cyber attack. Read these tips to learn how to help stay safe online.Read More »Protect your personal information from online risks

Ladder safety best practices

Ladder SafetyLadder safety should start before even stepping foot on one. The improper use of a ladder, or using an object other than a ladder to reach an item, can result in serious injury due to over – reaching or falling. Statistics suggest that workers are more likely to abuse and misuse ladders rather than use them correctly in the workplace.

There are a number of factors that must be considered when working with ladders, and following key practices of ladder safety can help prevent a potential injury.Read More »Ladder safety best practices

The Hartford Broadens Professional Liability Offerings for Tech Companies

The Hartford has enhanced its FailSafe suite of professional liability offerings to address the evolving needs of technology companies with expanded coverage for data, systems and networks. “Professional liability is one of the most significant risks for technology companies today,” said Joe Coray, vice president of The Hartford’s Technology & Life Science Practice.  “An alleged failure of a product or… Read More »The Hartford Broadens Professional Liability Offerings for Tech Companies

Webinar: Ergonomic Controls – Don’t Design for the Average

ergonomic workstationRISK CONTROL WEBINAR
Are there job tasks at your company that create ergonomic risk for your employees?
Ergonomic assessments can be instrumental in identifying risk factors in the jobs or tasks that your employees are performing. But simply conducting an assessment of the job or task is not enough. Determining the root cause and implementing solutions to control identified musculoskeletal risk factors should be the focus of your improvement process. Solutions can take many forms — adding a mechanical device to help the worker, redesigning the layout of the work space or implementing a best practice or technique to improve how a task is done.
Read More »Webinar: Ergonomic Controls – Don’t Design for the Average