Staying safe in the workplace

Staying safe in the workplace

by Evigan Xiao 10 Oct 2018

Workplace accidents can occur even in air-conditioned, carpeted office buildings. A lapse in attention or a momentary bout of carelessness is often all it takes to trigger a regrettable incident that would have been all but avoidable. Some of the more common accidents include:

 

  • Slips/trips/falls
  • Muscle strains
  • Hit by falling objects
  • Repetitive strain injury
  • Crashes/collisions
  • Cuts/lacerations

 

A common factor shared by most of these accidents is fatigue. Tiredness is a feeling that unfortunately all working professionals are familiar with. Be it due to a lack of sleep or excessive workloads, fatigue plays a heavy hand when it comes to determining the extent of situational and personal awareness. An accurate analogy in the real world would be that of the correlation between drivers falling asleep behind the wheel and road accidents.

 

Addressing fatigue in the workplace tends to work best when one adopts a holistic and multi-faceted approach. The office space is both a working and social environment. As such, employing both preventive and proactive measures should allow one to safeguard against fatigue-related accidents.

 

1. Make full use of recovery devices

If you’re bringing an injured body to the workplace, you need to make every effort to ensure that said body is well-protected. Things like wrist and ankle sprains are pretty pedestrian as far as injuries go, but they can easily lead to dropped objects or falls. Wearing braces or using movement aids shouldn’t be considered a sign of weakness; these devices promote recovery while also preventing any exacerbation of existing injuries.

 

2. Look out workplace hazards

Tangled wires, exposed electrical outlets/wiring and loose fans/floorboards/ceiling panels are things that need to be immediately highlighted to HR upon identification. Aside from the obvious threat to OH & S, these hazards could be indicative of a deeper systemic issue in the building/office.

 

3. Don't work if you're unwell

Illnesses like the flu tend to make us feel even more tired than usual due to the amount of stress our bodies are under when it comes to fighting infection. When you feel like deadweight, your ability to react to your surroundings is thoroughly compromised. Even if the label on your medication reads “do not operate machinery after consumption”, it’s safe to assume that you’ll be in no condition to make your rounds in the office.

 

While most of mentioned accidents may seem trivial on paper, then tend to have a negatively compounding effect on one’s health and productivity. Adopting a lackadaisical attitude will almost certainly earn you a ticket to a gala premiere of assorted bumps and bruises. Stay safe or end up being sorry!