What Types of Injuries Are Office Workers Susceptible To?

Jun 29, 2016 by

Just like employees injured performing physically demanding work in hazardous environments, employees injured in the office are entitled to fair compensation. Workers in office environments should not assume they are protected or immune to a possible injury.

The hazards in office environments are not as obvious as those encountered by workers who use machinery or heavy equipment. However, hazards do exist in the office. Some of the most common office injuries include repetitive strain injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and bursitis. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration writes that work-related musculoskeletal disorders account for $15 billion in workers’ compensation costs.

Office workers are also highly susceptible to slip and fall accidents, lifting injuries, back injuries, and head and neck injuries. According to the Center for Disease Control, an office employee is 2 to 2.5 times more likely to suffer an injury from a fall than workers in other environments. Some of the main causes of falls include: using a chair instead of a step ladder to reach something, tripping over an object in a walkway, slipping on a wet floor, or poor lighting/visibility.

A majority of office injuries can be avoided through preventative measures. For example, slip and fall accidents can be avoided by reporting loose carpeting or flooring, keeping areas clear of electrical cords, and cleaning up spills immediately. Heavy lifting can cause neck, shoulder, and back injuries. To avoid such an injury, workers should lift by squatting and lifting the load with their legs, rather than their back, and hold the load close to their body. Workers can avoid repetitive strain injuries by adjusting chair, keyboard, and monitor positions and avoiding using excessive force when making repetitive motions such as typing. It is also important to stand and stretch every half hour to release tensions related to strain.

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