Injuries to restaurant workers cause employees to miss an average of 30 days from work, according to claims data analyzed by AmTrust Financial Services, Inc., the nation’s fourth largest provider of workers’ compensation insurance.
AmTrust released the first “AmTrust Restaurant Risk Report” with key insights based on more than 84,006 claims from 2013 to 2017 by the company’s restaurant clients with loss payments.
Injuries varied across restaurant types and ranged from just a few days to over a year of time lost for certain injuries, including Barista Wrist suffered by coffee shop workers. Additional highlights include:
Cuts, punctures or scrapes make up a third of restaurant claims reported
- While sharp objects cause the most reported claims, falls and slips resulted in $198.4 million in claims paid, 4.5 times more in paid losses than for cuts, punctures or scrapes
- Cafés and coffee shops yield the highest lost time – on average 45 percent more time lost than all other restaurant types
- Wrist injuries are the biggest danger for coffee shop workers, with Barista Wrist resulting in an average of 366 days to return to work
- The average lost time due to restaurant injuries varies from less than four days to nearly two months
- The states with the highest average lost time are Vermont, New Jersey, Indiana, Mississippi, and Idaho while the states with the lowest average lost time were Ohio, Michigan, North Dakota, Wyoming and Washington
- Barbecue restaurants have the highest days lost for “strains from lifting” with an average of 65.9 days out.
“Employee safety is a priority and, in this competitive environment where restaurants are vying for qualified employees, it is difficult when accidents and injuries cause time away from work,” says Matt Zender, SVP and Workers’ Compensation Product Manager for AmTrust. “We felt that it was important to identify commons claims across the industry and offer suggestions to help restaurant owners protect their business and employees from work-related accidents.”
Zender adds, “Our data supports the increasingly accepted belief that the repetitive stress injury known as ‘Barista Wrist’ is a very real condition as wrist injuries accounted for the most days of work missed.”
AmTrust’s data also indicated that restaurant claims increase in the summer months, which is peak season for many restaurants, with roughly four to five percent more employees on staff in June, July and August compared to other months. Similar to past years, July was the highest month for claims in 2017, with 13 percent more claims than an average month.