How to Prevent Some of the Most Common Workplace Accidents


Workplace accidents can be bad for business. Not only are they bad for morale and can mean a drop in productivity, they can also cost you dearly in terms of compensation or OSHA fines. That’s why prevention is so important, and it’s worth considering whether your workplace is at risk of some of the most common workplace accidents, like the ones below.

Slip and fall injuries

Around 15% of disabling workplace accidents are slips, trips or falls, but the good news is, this type of accident is one of the most preventable.

Trips can be avoided by ensuring you have clear walkways, that equipment or trash isn’t left in the way. Get employees into a habit of picking things up as they go along. You can prevent falls by ensuring any dangerous areas are roped off and that people working at a height have the proper safety equipment. Slips can be harder to avoid, especially in wet weather. Invest in some logo mats at the entrance to your workplace and make sure employees have cleaning equipment to quickly mop up any spills.

Strained muscles from lifting

If your workplace is an environment where people do a lot of lifting, or work with machinery that requires physical strength, then muscle strains can be a common injury. The back and neck are particularly vulnerable areas, which can mean long periods of sick time for those who are affected.

You can avoid these incidents by ensuring people are properly trained on lifting techniques. Make it part of their inductions. People often get sloppy over time, so refresher courses can also help. Make sure people who have physically demanding jobs take regular breaks, and that they aren’t stuck on the same task for hours, which can lead to repetitive strain injury (RSI).

Vehicle accidents

Whether it’s an accident involving a work vehicle off-site, or an impact in a forklift truck in a warehouse, vehicle accidents can lead to serious injuries and even be fatal.

When you hire new drivers, make sure their paperwork is checked and if you’re in a state with a points system, that they have a clean license. Make it company policy to wear a seatbelt and ensure there are serious consequences for things like mobile phone use behind the wheel.

In the warehouse, make sure everyone wears high-visibility clothing and that people who drive a forklift are well-trained and know how to avoid collisions.

Falling objects

Falling objects are extremely dangerous in the workplace, whether it is tools being dropped from a height, or even objects falling from shelves or storage spaces. There are a number of ways you can avoid falling object injuries in the workplace, from requiring your team to wear helmets to attaching tools to lanyards when they are being used overhead. Also, keep your workplace organized. This will ensure things don’t spill out of cupboards when they are opened.

Avoiding workplace accidents is essential for modern businesses, as it helps you avoid the legal issues and downtime that can come with an accident happening on your premises.


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Founded in 1994 by the late Pamela Hulse Andrews, Cascade Business News (CBN) became Central Oregon’s premier business publication. •

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