Workplace injuries can leave significant impacts on employers and a business, such as severe health problems, hefty medical bills, lower morale from workers, and lost productivity. Also, as a business owner, you may have to face legal implications, some of which can cause financial constraints and a bad image for your business.
Remember, it’s your duty to ensure that your place of work is safe from injuries. To achieve that, you have to pinpoint various safety risks depending on the nature of your business, then come up with strategies on how to prevent them.
Below are some of the most common workplace injuries and how they can be prevented.
Slips And Falls
Slips and falls are among the most common workplace injuries and can be caused by things like slippery floors and uneven surfaces. If non-fatal, slips and falls can cause injuries like muscle strains. They can also cause severe problems such as brain damage. It is possible to prevent slips and falls by doing the following.
- Ensuring that spills are cleaned immediately
- Putting “wet” floor signs if there is a spill or after mopping the floors
- Putting non-skid tapes on paths that are used frequently
Contact With Objects
Injuries involving contact with objects are fairly common. These may include tools falling from above and hitting a person. Some of these injuries don’t cause a lot of damage, especially when the falling object is not large or heavy. However, some injuries can be fatal, especially when heavy equipment, such as those used in construction and agricultural sites.
You can prevent these injuries by ensuring that all equipment is in good working conditions and safely secured. You also can instruct employees to always wear safety gear such as helmets to protect their heads and get the best working steel toe cowboy boots for sale to protect their legs and feet.
Transport-related injuries may not happen frequently, but when they do, they cause severe injuries or, in worse cases, death. These accidents can involve vehicles, aircraft, watercraft, and railways. Vehicle accidents are the most common transport-related injuries in workplaces. The injuries may occur after a person falls from a vehicle, gets hit by objects in a vehicle, is hit or run over by a vehicle.
To avoid such injuries, ensure that you only employ qualified drivers for your business. You also need to adopt a safety program such as coming up with policies on drug abuse, vehicle maintenance, taking rests, and training.
Additionally, assess the workplace, identify the risky areas where these injuries can happen, and develop prevention strategies. These may include segregating pedestrians and vehicles, making obstructions visible, and setting speed limits.
Exposure To Harmful Substances
Exposure to harmful substances such as chemicals and gases can cause injuries. Exposure to radiation and extreme temperatures can also cause health risks. Ensure that workers wear protective gear such as face masks, goggles, and gloves to prevent them. Also, ensure there is proper ventilation, especially in workplaces with many people in a confined place. Additionally, ensure that all risky substances are properly stored so that people don’t come into contact with them.
Fires And Explosions
Fires and explosions commonly occur due to faults, such as improper storage of combustible substances and faulty gas lines. They are among the workplace injuries with the highest casualty rates. These accidents can cause various injuries such as respiratory system damage and burns. Fires and explosion injuries can be prevented by practicing the following.
- Ensuring that fire protection equipment is easily accessible
- Proper disposal of hazardous waste that can explode or cause fires
- Storing flammable materials safely
- Putting in place emergency and evacuation policies
- Adhering to all the fire safety regulations set aside by the authorities
Repetitive Stress Injuries
Some of the most common repetitive stress injuries include tendinitis, rotator cuff injuries, and bursitis. These injuries don’t occur at once. They develop gradually and eventually cause symptoms such as severe pain, which needs to be addressed immediately.
Some of the causes of these injuries include improper lifting and not taking breaks. Workers assigned tasks involving repetitive motion should be taught how to lift objects to avoid injuries, maintain the right posture, and be given several breaks to take some rest and stretch.
You should also provide tools that offer the right ergonomic support, such as adjustable desks and chairs with footrests.
Workers in some industries are at risk of getting these injuries and should therefore be more careful. They include:
- Construction industries
- Transport industries
- Manufacturing industries
Injuries at workplaces may happen as a result of accidents or negligence. These injuries usually have a lot of implications, such as severe health problems, lost days, and unproductivity. In case of an injury in the place of work, the employer also bears the consequences, which is one of the reasons why they should come up with preventative measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for everyone. Employees also appreciate where they feel that their safety is greatly considered, which enhances productivity.