The types of risks that are associated with, for example, opening up a small office compared to running a car repair shop are completely different. Understanding the ways in which a car repair shop may leave you vulnerable is extremely important, especially when it’s time to shop around for the right insurance policy to provide coverage for your business
There are two basic essentials for bare-bones insurance coverage: property and liability. Property insurance will cover your physical property, both the shop itself as well as the lifts, equipment and even cars that are being repaired within your shop. Liability protection adds another level of security against the possibility of accidents happening on your property. For example, if a customer walks into the work area, slips and suffers an injury.
For an auto shop, these are especially important. The powerful equipment and tools used in daily business also happen to be potentially dangerous when in the wrong hands or in case of exposure to an untrained person. Loss of tools or equipment, or injuries sustained by those items, could be devastating to the business without the right insurance policy.
Auto Shop Hazards
An auto repair shop provides a great service, but also carries a high level of risk. For one thing, the building itself often has to meet certain city or county building codes in order to conduct the needed repairs safely on the premises.
- Physical Considerations: Since an auto repair shop will be storing and disposing of toxic, flammable chemicals, it’s important that proper levels of protection are being taken. Fire extinguishers, fire doors and flammables cabinets should all be in effect. Regulations may require special rough-service light bulbs within the shop area, but even if these are optional, they may be a good idea.
- Safety Considerations: Since employees will be working around chemicals and equipment that require special protection, your repair shop must provide that protection. Safety gear like goggles, necessary accessories like welding helmets, and emergency measures like eyewash stations must be provided for the safety of the employees. The shop must have proper ventilation, and smoking or eating in the work area should be prohibited.
- Environmental Concerns: Proper storage and recycling not just of toxic waste, but other materials like rubber tires and car batteries are another important consideration. Employees should have access to MSDS data (material safety data sheets) to understand both the environmental hazards of the materials they’re working with, and also any personal precautions they may wish to take.
It’s a good idea to start at the state, city or county regulatory level and work your way down to finding the right small business insurance for protection. Small business insurance can provide an additional level of security to your operation, ensuring that both your shop and your employees are working under the optimum safety and health-conscious surroundings that are recommended.