Tragedy in the form of workplace injuries can strike any worker, anytime. This despite the health and safety rules and regulations for the job issued by employers to prevent such injuries.
Workplace injuries that require hospitalization or prove fatal, not only severely effects the worker and his or her family, it also impacts the company. It may result in reduced productivity, increased liability of compensation claims and adversely effect insurance rates, not to mention lowering the morale of the company.
Common causes of workplace injuries
It is said that forewarned is forearmed. If the causes of workplace injuries are known, they can easily be avoided, thus minimizing their occurrence. Let us see the nine most common causes of workplace injuries:
In their zeal to up productivity, managers often push their workers beyond reasonable limits, resulting in fatigue and tiredness, not only of the body, but also of the mind. Both physical and mental tiredness may cause injuries through slip & falls.
2. Mental stress
It is not only a demanding supervisor or manager that adds to a worker’s stress, but also his current state of finances, his personal relationships and his dealings with his co-workers. This kind of stress may prevent the worker from focusing on the job, resulting in workplace injuries.
3. Adverse workplace conditions
If the work floor is not organized and is strewn with tools and materials, chances of workplace injuries increase. Slips and falls due to carelessly thrown oils and other liquids on the floor or wires stretched along the floor become highly probable.
4. Unsecured heavy objects
At times, boxes are stacked dangerously or a yet-to-be-installed machinery stands precariously on the work floor. This may make it prone to toppling, say by a trolley hitting against it or someone bumping into it, resulting in injuries.
5. Not using protective clothing
Hazardous materials require protective clothing that the company provides. Sometimes, the protective clothing may be too worn out to keep hazardous chemicals and toxic waste out. At other times, even the workers may neglect to wear the protective clothing, resulting in burns, skin infections and even blindness.
6. Activities straining nerves and muscles
Repetitive motion activities qualify for workplace injuries, since they may give rise to carpal tunnel syndrome and other related ailments.
Workers may rush from one place to the other on the work floor in their haste to complete their assigned jobs. This may result in collisions with objects and other workers. Collision injuries are a common occurrence.
8. Incorrect body posture
If the job entails lifting heavy weights, it is important to learn how to lift them without harming the body. Incorrect lifting posture may result in back injuries or pulled muscles.
9. Infighting among workers
Petty jealousies, unfair treatment, promotional aspirations, insults, personal enmity, revenge and the like may become a cause of infighting among workers. This may escalate to the extent of physical assaults that may result in injuries.
Workplace injuries are best prevented, for an injured worker not only contributes towards wasted work hours, but also proves a drain on a company’s finances in settling workplace injury compensation.