It’s easy to be careless every now and then. We may not see a wet floor sign, we may not pay attention to where we’re going, or we may drop something without realizing it. Unfortunately, it can lead to inconvenient injuries, especially in the workplace. In 2016, almost 3 million on-the-job nonfatal injuries and illnesses were reported by private industry employers. This is quite a large number to take into consideration, especially as a workplace injury can happen to you or a loved one. Keep reading to learn five causes of workplace accidents.
Overexertion is the top cause of workplace injuries according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Accidents caused by physical overexertion include pulling, pushing, lifting, bending, kneeling, reaching or holding. Although you may not lift big or heavy objects at work, light and small items – like files or books – can cause injury to your neck, back and shoulder if proper techniques to carry them are not implemented.
Slip and falls
Slips and fall accidents are also one of the leading causes of workplace injury. They have accounted for a total of $16.5 billion in workers’ compensation claims in the United States. Slip and fall accidents can happen from hazards such as loose cords or electrical wires on the floor, wet floors, or when climbing on a chair to reach something. Be cautious with any spills or debris on the floor, and if you notice any, make sure to put a sign up or alert your employer.
Falls on the same level
Falls on the same level are defined as falling on the same surface you are walking or working on, or falling into or against objects that are above the surface you’re on. Same-level falls are the most common type of fall, making up 65-percent of all fall injuries. Common injuries from falls on the same level are broken bones, fractures or sprains in the leg, ankle, upper arm, hand, spine and hip. By having the right fall protection equipment and training employees to know different fall hazards, you can take a step in the right direction towards preventing same-level fall injuries.
Falls to a lower level
Falls to a lower level (elevated falls) involve falling to a level below the surface you are walking or working on. These falls are much dangerous than falls on the same level, as they can result in more serious injuries, or even death. Over 60-percent of elevated falls occur from a height of 10 feet or less. Guardrails, handrails, stair railings, safety nets and harnesses are all ways to protect your employees if they work in an area where elevated falls are possible.
Struck against objects or equipment
“Struck against” refers to incidents where an employee hits themselves against an object or equipment in the workplace. This includes running into a corner, vehicle, overhead object or another person. Some of the injuries that can occur from this are broken bones, fractures, sprains, head and/or brain trauma, shoulder and lower leg injuries. To prevent these injuries, make sure that equipment is in good upkeep via regular inspections. If you notice any hazards, make sure to alert your boss and always warn employees of any potential dangers.
Many workplace injuries can be prevented through being cautious, being cognizant of your surroundings and good housekeeping. If you are ever injured at work, do not hesitate to seek legal help when filing for a workers compensation claim. The Berman Law Group’s experienced and dedicated Florida workers’ compensation attorneys will fight to make sure you come out on top. We will be by your side every step of the way. Call us today at 800-375-5555 for a free initial consultation.