Often times, when we think of workplace injuries, outdoor jobs that require dangerous tools or working at great heights are the first that come to mind. However, working an office job does not mean you escape the possibility of getting an injury at work. Unfortunately, even around the office there are still many ways you could get seriously injured.
According to the National Safety Council, approximately 4.5 million preventable workplace injuries occurred in 2017. Industries such as Financial Services, Professional and Business services, and Educational and Health services, account for hundreds of thousands of these injuries, even though workers in these industries generally work inside or in an office. Some of the most common, yet preventable, office injuries include falls and injuries from lifting heavy objects.
Falls in the Workplace
Although it is unlikely you will fall from great heights in an office setting, same level falls are especially common in these settings. Causes of these types of falls are most often connected to cluttered workspaces that put employees at risk of tripping over materials on the floor. It is also possible to trip over open file drawers or electrical cords. Falls may result from wet office floors or even attempting to use a chair instead of a ladder to get an out-of-reach object.
Because falls can result in injuries, including sprains and broken bones, it’s important to pay attention to your workspace to avoid these injuries. Always watch where your walking and work with your co-workers to keep a tidy work space. If you see something in your office space that would cause a fall, like a lose wire, carpeting, or stair, report it. Use proper equipment such as a ladder when reaching for items stored at levels above your height, and ask someone to assist you while you get that item.
Take Caution When Lifting to Avoid an Injury at Work
Working around an office may require lifting heavy boxes filled with files or supplies. It can require moving heavy office equipment including desks, printers, or copy machines. It doesn’t take much to strain your back, neck, shoulders, or arms by improperly lifting an object that is even slightly too heavy for you. If you are required to lift light to heavy objects at work, always do so with caution so as to avoid an unnecessary injuries. Following proper lifting techniques such as squatting to lift rather than bending over.
Ultimately, if the item is too heavy, don’t try to lift it. Ask for assistance if you need to move heavy objects—moving an item as a team can reduce your risk of injury at work. Every person is entitled to work in a safe environment, especially in an office setting, so take time to ensure your office space is safe. If you see hazards or are required to lift heavy items that may cause injury at work, talk to your manager. Even with taking precautions, it is possible to still get injured at the office. If you have initiated a lawsuit surrounding an office-related fall or other injury at work, but worry about your ability to keep up with all of your expenses, USClaims can help.
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