Poor Ergonomics Leads Top Causes of Workplace Injuries

Workplace injuries cost businesses over $1 billion per week, according to the Liberty Mutual 2019 Workplace Safety Index. The study identifies the top 10 causes of disabling injuries at work, and their costs. Ergonomics related injuries are number one with a total cost of $13.1 Billion. As a supplier of ergonomic equipment we can’t stress enough how important it is for workers to have the proper support when body movement or lifting is required. Let’s take a closer look at the top ten, and how to avoid the problems.

#1. Overexertion Including Outside Sources

Injuries related to pushing, pulling, holding, carrying, or throwing, tops the Liberty Mutual study.

How to Avoid

When it comes to assessing and solving for these issues, the first thing to look at is ergonomics. Poor workplace ergonomics leave workers vulnerable to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). These injures can be debilitating and lead to significant out of work, insurance, and other costs to businesses. Ergonomic equipment such as height adjustable lifts, and vacuum and magnetic lifts, among others,can help dramatically reduce the risk of MSDs.

#2. Falls on Same Level

Accidents happen, but most workplace accidents can be prevented with the right workspace setup and employee awareness.

How to Avoid

There are a number of steps that can be taken to help avoid falls. Make sure that your employees are wearing proper footwear that grips the floor and provides the right support. Ensure that walking traffic areas are consistently clear of debris and obstacles. Setup lighting to properly illuminate areas with foot traffic. And ensure that walking surfaces are non-slip.

#3. Struck By Object or Equipment

The third leading source of workplace injury is when objects fall from above and strike workers. This issue can be avoided several ways.

How to Avoid

Give employees a “heads up” by provide signage when there is potential risk of falling objects. Secure the edges of high spaces, such as storage areas, with rails and barricades that keep objects in place. And workers should always secure loads when moving them to another level or lifting objects high. This includes the use of ergonomic equipment such as ergonomic lifts and manipulators and self-leveling carts.

#4. Falls to Lower Level

Falls from high places, such as ladders or platforms, can be extremely dangerous. Ladder falls can lead to serious injury and are responsible for numerous deaths each year.

How to Avoid

Although this is not the most common cause of injury in the workplace, it is one of the most serious. To prevent falls from high places, start by making sure workers have the right equipment. Ladders, for example, should be well constructed and the parts should be in good working order. Always secure the edges of high places with rails or barricades. Make sure that workers wear appropriate footwear that provides support and grip. And make sure ladders are properly set up to be level and placed on a secure footing when in use.

#5. Other Exertions or Bodily Reactions

Ergonomics plays another big role here. The fifth cause of workplace injuries involves crawling, bending, reaching, twisting, climbing, kneeling or walking. These exertions, particularly when done repetitively, can put stress and strain on muscles, tendons and joints. This can lead to debilitating musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

How to Avoid

The best way to eliminate these motions is with the aid of ergonomic equipment. Desk and workstation lifts automatically adjust the height of workstations to a comfortable level. Ergonomic lifts and manipulators help eliminate bending and twisting by lifting, tilting and turning barrels, drums, rolls and boxes. And self-leveling carts aid the process of unloading parts and products from skids, pallets or bulk containers.

The remaining top ten causes of disabling workplace injuries are as follows: #6 vehicle accidents, #7 slip or trip without fall, #8 caught in or compressed by equipment or objects, #9 repetitive motions involving microtasks, and #10 struck against objects or equipment.

In Conclusion

Ergo Equipment is not surprised to see poor ergonomics among the top causes of disabling workplace injuries. Learning about these issues, and taking steps to avoid them, will go a long way towards keeping workers safe and avoiding significant costs to businesses. To learn more about ergonomic equipment and the range of solutions they provide, visit our website today.

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