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07 Jun

Four Commonly Overlooked Office Hazards

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Generally, most people assume that a desk job in a well-designed, modern office environment would be safer than working at an industrial site. Unfortunately, while office-related injuries are not as dramatic as those obtained at a construction site or manufacturing plant, they are incredibly common and are every bit as costly to employers.


According to the National Safety Council, the top work-related causes of injury “account for more than 85% of all nonfatal injuries involving days away from work.” The top three causes include overexertion and bodily reaction, contact with objects and equipment, and slips, trips, and falls.


Here is our list of the top four commonly overlooked office hazards and suggestions for preventing them:

    • Ergonomic Strain
      Posture and repetitive movements (mouse and keyboard) can result in ergonomic strain and injury. In addition to regular safety training, employees should receive annual instruction on how to set-up, adjust, and best operate equipment to ensure the best workstation fit.


    • Preventable Falls
      Many falls could be prevented if the employee was alert and distraction-free (not walking and texting/answering emails), stood up to reach something, closing desk or file drawers, and ensuring electrical cords/wires are tucked away. Remind employees to help each other stay safe by reporting any loose carpet or flooring, cleaning up spills (including any dropped ice), and stay alert when walking around the office.


    • Equipment Degradation
      Desks and chairs are equipment just like any other office equipment. This means that they can wear out just like any other equipment, also. However, companies are slow or reluctant to replace desks and chairs due to upfront costs. Inspect employee desks and chairs regularly, replacing or repairing any damaged equipment right away. Additionally, it is a good idea to build these regular types of repairs or replacement into your annual budget.


    • Inclement Weather
      Many times it is the inside of the building where employee safety is a concern when it comes to slips, trips, and falls. However, inclement weather (rain, snow, ice, etc.) can bring upon outdoor hazards on steps, ramps/walkways, entries and exits, and parking lots. Invest in nonslip runners or non-skid pavers to ensure employee safety without compromising your outdoor look and feel.


Download our Loss Control and Safety forms here!


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