According to the US Bureau of Labor, 5,250 fatal injuries have occurred in different workplaces in 2018. It’s safe to assume that the number of injuries that haven’t resulted in death is also exceptionally high. Even though workplace safety standards have noticeably progressed over the years, the risks are still quite high in certain industries and fields. We’ve created a brief guide that should help you know what to do to reduce the risk of potential work-related injuries.
Keep The Workspace Uncluttered
While a clean workspace doesn’t necessarily diminish all hazards to zero, but it can certainly reduce random safety hazards. An unclean and cluttered area of work can be a serious problem for many workers, especially those who need to be able to navigate the workplace easily like in a construction site or office.
Make sure that all cables and cords are tucked into one place to avoid tripping hazards, in addition to removing any equipment that may be laying on the ground for no reason. Whether you are in a manufactory or a cubicle, you won’t believe how a cluttered space can be dangerous.
Know Your Legal Rights
You should try to take as many precautions as possible to avoid injury, but in case you do get injured at work, you need to know your legal rights. While the injuries should be covered under workers’ compensation insurance, you should be wary of insurance companies.
The damages resulting from personal injury can be serious enough to leave you out of a job or as commonly seen in San Antonio, Texas, they can leave you with a disability. Making sure that you can back up your claim with evidence of negligence or wrongdoing is essential to build a strong case against the insurance company.
Always Use Proper Safety Equipment
Safety equipment is an essential element in certain jobs, specifically those in a manufactory or a construction site. Even the most trivial accidents can become disastrous if you are not wearing the right safety gear. Proper training should be provided by the employer to the employees upon recruiting, but in case you weren’t provided any formal training, you need to take the time to make sure that you know how to properly wear safety equipment to avoid any injuries.
While it may sound intuitive to use signs to warn others that an area can be a safety hazard, a lot of employers don’t. You need to make sure that you have proper signage that can remind employees of specific safety procedures.
The signs need to be put in a visible place where all employees can see them whenever they are in an area that requires specific safety standards. If you are an employee, never ignore the signs that are put into place by the employer because that can make you liable for some damages you may incur.
Always Report Accidents
If you stumble upon an accident in the workplace, even if it was a very slight accident that didn’t leave anyone noticeably injured, you need to report it as soon as possible. One small accident can sometimes evolve into a huge hazard that can lead to fatal injuries if it is left unchecked.
Employees and employers should be proactive once an accident happens to make sure that they take all the safety precautions before they are in the area. Employers often encourage workers to bring them details that could stop any potential accidents from happening, so make sure you keep a close eye on issues that can be hazards in the future.
Avoid Taking Shortcuts
Shortcuts can sometimes be great when you are bound by a tight deadline, but that doesn’t mean that you should take them. Saving some time on a process is simply not worth getting injured for, especially when you take into account the type of heavy injuries that can affect your entire quality of life. If you are unable to finish the job within the given time, ask for an extension instead of risking your health to be able to finish the task.
Review The Safety Guidelines
Safety guidelines are there for a reason. You want to make sure that you’ve spent adequate time reading and practicing the safety guidelines before doing the task. A lot of employees think of them as unnecessary paperwork or drills, but they can actually save lives when it comes to it. This is extremely important when you are operating heavy machinery or working on high platforms. Knowing the potential hazards before you get into the job will help you know what mistakes you should avoid.
While it’s true that most people associate injuries and accidents with high-risk jobs like construction or manufacturing, workplace injuries can easily happen on any job. It is the responsibility of the employers to work on minimizing the risks of injury as much as possible, but it is also important for the employees to be aware of the risks that can be avoided.
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