Whether you sit at a desk or rescue people from burning buildings, every workplace has obvious and hidden dangers. Even a benign tool can be a flying projectile if used incorrectly. Protecting yourself from everyday workplace dangers takes observation and intelligent decisions to avoid injury.
Working With Chemicals
A simple cleaning solution can burn you severely if it is in contact with your eyes, for example. When you work with any chemicals, read the warning information on the container. Your workplace must have this information available in case of an accident. Wear gloves and protective eyewear during chemical use. Be aware of eye wash stations close to your workspace. If a chemical hurts your eyes, you want to wash it out as soon as possible.
Specialized Needs In Niche Industries
Every work industry has a unique set of dangers, from heavy machinery use to deep wells. Wear ear plugs where noise pollution is an issue. If you work with highly flammable products, for example, you need to wear gloves, hardhats and fire retardant clothing. If you are unsure about the proper protective gear, ask your supervisor about all the safety parameters. Management should have this information clearly available from a supervisor, notification board or safety pamphlet. Your safety is the employer’s top priority.
It’s Only Typing
One of the most hidden dangers in the workplace is ergonomic design. With more work performed on the computer, workers are contracting repetitive motion injuries from improper physical positioning. Employees should have a chair and desk adjustable to their height and body shape. Wrist supports or keyboard cushions help workers stay in a healthy posture as they type. Because poor ergonomic design is not noticed until the worker has chronic pain problems, this danger should be brought up the moment you are hired. Good posture and hand positioning reduces pain and keeps you on the job.
Some employees may try to alter a machine or object to make it easier to work with on a daily basis. Avoid altering objects, especially if it is heavy machinery. Safety restraints and barriers are installed for a reason. If you remove any part of the machine, you create a dangerous situation for you and other employees. Ask for help if you cannot figure out a machine without severely altering its components.
Workplace safety depends on diligent employees and employers. Evaluate your workspace everyday to ensure that you are sitting correctly and nearby machines are operating correctly. Report any unusual issues to your supervisor to keep everyone safe.