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Most Common Workplace Injuries When Ergonomics Aren’t Considered

Apr 5, 2021 | Ergonomics

While workplace injuries can affect any industry, they’re especially common in the industrial sector. Work processes can be strenuous or workers use equipment that could be dangerous, especially if employees aren’t properly trained.

An effective way for employers to prevent injuries is to integrate ergonomics into the workplace. Here are the most common workplace injuries and how ergonomics can prevent them in the industrial sector.

The Most Common Workplace Injuries in the Industrial Sector

The workplace injuries that employees in the industrial sector are most likely to experience are:

  • Soreness and pain
  • Strains, sprains, and tears
  • Overexertion
  • Lacerations and cuts
  • Trips, slips, and falls
  • Contact with equipment and other objects
  • Back injuries and spinal damage

You’ll know if a staff member suffered an injury because they may be suffering from these symptoms:

  • Aching, dull, stabbing, sharp, or burning pain
  • Numbing or tingling
  • Coordination loss
  • Decreased grip strength, muscle weakness, or cramping
  • Discoloration or coldness in the injured area
  • Discomfort and decreased range of motion
  • Joint stiffness
  • Inflammation and swelling
  • Blurred vision
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Watery or burning eyes

How do these injuries and symptoms start? Certain tasks and actions in the industrial sector lead to an increased risk of injury and long-term damage.

Tasks and Motions That Lead to Ergonomic Problems

There are specific causes of ergonomic problems and injuries. These include:

  • Awkward posture
  • Prolonged repetitive tasks
  • Too much exertion
  • Vibration from equipment and machines

You can address some of these by making  ergonomic changes when you invest in a workbench.

How Ergonomic Workbenches Can Help

Businesses in the industrial sector can benefit from ergonomic workbenches.

These workbenches are adjustable to make the site more comfortable and productive for each individual staff member. Here are other ways that ergonomic workbenches can benefit your staff members.

Proper Reach Zones

Industrial workers are often reaching for equipment, tools, products, components, and other materials.

There’s a chance your staff members get into awkward positions while reaching, especially if the materials they need aren’t placed in their reach zone.

Not only that, but reaching can increase the risk of injury. If your staff members are reaching frequently, they don’t have time to recover from each reach. This increases the risk of developing musculoskeletal disorders.

Using an ergonomic workbench while carefully planning the worksite can prevent long reaches and ensure all items are in a comfortable reach. This not only decreases the risk of injury but increases productivity.

Correct Height for Different Employees

All of your staff members are of different sizes, heights, and have different mass levels. That’s why fixed height and size workbenches are often not the best option.

Employers should choose ergonomic workbenches that are height adjustable. These enhance employee safety and create a more comfortable working environment.

When the workbench is at the correct height, this will improve your employee’s range of motion. Staff members won’t have to stretch, bend, or reach frequently.

The frequency of these actions results in frequent stress, which increases the risk of injury.

Tools and Accessories to Alleviate Different Motions

You can add other tools and accessories to your workplace to create a more effective ergonomic experience and a safe work environment.

For example, feet and casters can level the workstation on an uneven surface, uprights allow you to place tools in one place, and there are a myriad of other ergonomic tools available.

How Employers Can Prevent Employee Injuries

There are other ways that employers can prevent injuries in the workplace. Here are some ergonomic concepts to keep in mind.

Embrace Industrial Safety Measures

There are various safety measures that the industrial sector monitors. When you embrace and monitor these measures yourself, you’ll effectively prevent numerous workplace injuries.

Some of the most basic measures include surveying your workplace for trip, slip, and fall hazards.

Create an audit process to locate hazards and take any corrective hazards that are necessary. Other actions, such as investing in spill guards, are also beneficial.

Get an Ergonomic Assessment of Your Space

If you don’t know where to start, get an ergonomic assessment of your workplace.

An ergonomic assessment can identify any pain points that your employees face, how you can optimize your current arrangement, and make other changes (both big and small) to improve your workplace.

Allow Rests

Extra work leads to extra pressure and stress—not only mentally but also physically. There are many physical side effects if your staff members don’t rest, which can increase the risk of injury.

Taking breaks helps us feel physically refreshed as well as mentally relaxed. Your staff will also avoid burnout and will be more satisfied at the workplace.

What exactly are “rests” in this context? For most, these are short breaks (about 10 minutes in length) in addition to a lunch break.

Invest in Proper Training

There’s a reason why proper training results in fewer injuries.

They have the knowledge, skills, and resources to perform their jobs and use necessary equipment effectively. They will also commit fewer mistakes that could result in injury.

Proper training is also ideal for employers. You won’t have to supervise employees as much, devoting your time to managerial tasks that keep your business running.

With fewer injured employees, your staff members will be more productive.

Create a More Ergonomic Workplace

The only way employers can prevent the most common workplace injuries is by investing in ergonomic workstations. We offer workbenches and other products to create a safer work environment. Shop our products today.

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