Workplace injuries affect almost every type of industry. Workers can be subject to a variety of hazards in the workplace, some of which can cause significant injuries, medical costs and loss of wages. These issues also affect the profitability of the business, resulting in higher insurance premiums, costs for temporary workers and decreases in productivity. Premises liability cases in Memphis indicate that 3 of the most common workplace injuries can be avoided, so businesses can enjoy fewer accidents and lower insurance costs.
1 – Sprains and Strains
Materials handling tasks account for the greatest number of injuries on the job. These problems include muscle sprains, back injuries and other musculoskeletal issues. Workers often take on lifting tasks themselves that would be better accomplished with a helper or a team approach. They may forego using available materials handling equipment for the sake of expediency, but these decisions can often result in unexpected injuries. In some cases, physical therapy is required to restore function, so that the worker can resume normal duties.
2 – Cuts and Punctures
The next most common injury incurred in the workplace is cuts and punctures. These injuries may result from tool use, insufficient use of protective equipment or simple lack of attention. Injuries often require medical care and may result in lost time and the need to assign limited tasks due to the partial disability. Healing from these injuries can take a significant amount of time, and any number of medical complications can result. The use of a temporary worker during the healing period can also increase the cost related to this type of injury. All of these issues can result in lost work time and increased cost to the employer.
3 – Falls
Falls continue to be among the top causes of injuries on the job. Although many employers think this is primarily a problem in the construction industry, falls can occur in any field of work. Even retail workers can be subject to falls that occur during normal work tasks. Climbing on ladders to reach inventory or supplies, elevations that are not protected with railings and slip-and-fall injuries can contribute to these problems. Many of these falls result in back injuries that require extensive medical treatment and physical therapy. Injuries can sometimes result in legal cases that extend over a period of time and can result in a settlement from the company. Careful assessment of the workplace on a periodic basis, along with an aggressive safety-training program, can help to reduce the number of these injuries and prevent injuries to employees, as well as lost work time.
Both employers and employees do not have to accept the risks of getting injured in the workplace. Intensive safety training that is reinforced in daily work tasks can help to reduce the number of injuries sustained on the job. Forward thinking companies incorporate stringent safety measures and formalized safety programs because they understand that workplace injuries not only negatively affect the quality of life for their employees. It also ultimately affects their bottom line.