Contrary to what you might think, it’s not just manual laborers who suffer from injuries at their place of work. Maybe it’s because we often see them wearing hard hats and protective gear whenever they’re on-site.
However, although injuries and illnesses are common in environments with immense physical activity and heavy machinery, it does not mean that those working in other professions are not prone to work-related injuries.
Workers get common workplace injuries all the time, even in offices, stores, hospitals, hotels, kitchens, and many other places. Some incidents are worse than others, with some even resulting in fatalities. All the same, employees who get injured on the job are entitled to fair workers’ compensation.
What Are Some of the Most Common Workplace Injuries Workers Get Exposed To?
Common workplace injuries vary across different professions and workspaces. It could be an attendant getting an injury while stocking items along the store aisles or a construction worker spraining their back after lifting a heavy load.
In all of the aforementioned cases, we can see that the employee is injured not just at work but also because of the nature of their work. If they were not doing that particular job, they would probably not have gotten an injury.
Below is a list of a few types of accidents that occur regularly in the workplace and their common causes.
1. Machinery and Equipment Injuries
Some people sustain workplace injuries from operating dangerous equipment and machinery. They can result in broken bones or, much worse, an injury that may cause paralysis or even amputation. For instance, a welder can get severe burn injuries when they come into contact with the welding flame.
In certain cases, the injury may be so severe that the workers can no longer continue doing the work as effectively. A logger can hurt themselves to the point of severing a limb while operating a power saw.
2. Slip and Fall Accidents
The most common types of workplace injuries are those that come about from slips and falls. It could be a wet floor that wasn’t marked, a ladder placed on a slippery surface, or a misstep on the stairs leading to a nasty tumble.
A Slip and fall workplace injury is often minor. But depending on the nature of the incident, some falls usually result in a broken bone or two.
3. Cuts and Lacerations
Cuts and lacerations are also common workplace accidents. Any tool or equipment such as saws and other cutting tools, broken glass, chunks of rusty metal, discarded nails, and large wood fragments with sharp edges can cause a deep cut. You don’t have to work in a kitchen for you to sustain this type of injury.
4. Burns From Body Contact With Fire or Electricity
Most, if not all workspaces, use some form of electrical equipment. You don’t have to work with electricity to suffer electrocution. An exposed power cord, a bad wiring job, or an equipment malfunction can easily cause mild or severe burns from electrocution. In some cases, a workplace injury resulting from electrocution can lead to something far more serious medical problems like cardiac arrest or even instant death.
5. Exposure To Harmful Environments
This is a common workplace accident, especially in the mining and construction industries. Quite often, casual workers are exposed to toxic substances such as harsh industrial chemicals. These chemicals could be liquid, like lead paint, or solid, like asbestos, a carcinogenic material that poses a health risk.
A workplace accident from noise pollution is another issue. Machines like drills, saws, cranes, wrecking balls, and bulldozers produce a lot of noise, which causes damage to the ears over time. Mines and quarries also use explosives that are not just loud but powerful and are capable of causing concussive injuries to an employee.
How Can Employees Be Protected From Getting a Workplace Injury?
As you can see, there are very many ways employees can pick up common workplace injuries. Everyday tasks can lead to nasty accidents that can reduce workforce productivity and, in extreme cases, even cripple or kill the victims. Nobody wants to work in an environment where they risk getting hurt and replaced.
The good news is there are certain steps employers can take to prevent workplace accidents, such as:
1. Enforcing Strict Workplace Safety Protocols
Most workplace injuries occur because there are poor or non-existent safety protocols. Any station with dangerous machinery should have a site manager who is responsible for enforcing occupational safety protocols. The site manager should also make sure that only qualified workers should be allowed to operate dangerous machinery. The Machines and any other tools should also be regularly inspected to ensure that they are in good working order.
Strict safety protocols will go a long way to prevent worker injury at the place of work. These safety protocols are not just limited to preset rules and policies. They also include wearing protective equipment such as heavy-duty gloves, boots, hazmat suits, or face/head protection to keep workers safe while doing their jobs.
2. Proper Training and Orientation of Workers
A lot of workplace injuries happen as a result of an employer hiring a poorly trained workforce. Although accidents do happen, experienced and knowledgeable workers rarely injure themselves on the job. They know their roles well, the limits of their capabilities, and how to safely conduct themselves at work to avoid injury.
Newer employees are also liable to mess up at work in a way that hurts themselves or others. This is often because they haven’t fully familiarized themselves with the new surroundings and aren’t fully aware of the many risks associated with their jobs.
Giving employees proper training on the job and assigning them to more experienced employees to mentor them can go a long way in preventing workplace injuries and reducing workers’ compensation claims where an injury has occurred.
3. Proper Staff Management and Organization
Organizing your workforce into teams that handle specific tasks greatly minimizes the chances of a work-related injury or illness. Different teams can specialize in certain roles, reducing the margin for error and freak workplace injuries.
While forming teams and delegating roles, every employer should take into account the levels of experience and the aptitude for different functions at the workplace. Properly organized workers will help to reduce claims of workers’ compensation in case of injury.
Why Do You Need Workers Comp Doctor for Workplace Injuries in New York?
Safety at the workplace can never be overstated. The potential loss in time, money, and labor from workplace injuries can dent a business’s efficiency. All in all, prevention is always better than cure. With proper planning, staff management, and an emphasis on safety protocols, you can create a safe workspace for your employees.
If you sustain get injured from a work-related accident, we can help you find and make an appointment with experienced and top qualified workers’ compensation doctors in New York City. Give Workers Comp Doctor a call today on (888) 590-4030, so we can help you get in touch with professional medical experts near you.