Workplace injuries may seem normal, but the consequences are hazardous – especially in industrial environments. Hundreds of thousands of workers are reported to be injured in workplaces annually in Canada.
Top causes of workplace injuries include slip and falls, overexertion and bodily reaction, contact with objects, etc. Workplace injuries damage worker’s morale, productivity as well as the negative image of companies.
When any specialized worker is unable to work, it can cause long-term damage to project plans. So, are these incidents preventable? Indeed. Knowing the types and causes of injuries can help you be more aware of the Jobsite.
There are plenty of ways to avoid workplace injuries, which every business owner should take into account. Prevention is better than cure. So, let’s talk about them in detail without any further ado.
Most Common Workplace Injuries in Canada
There are multitudes of situations that contribute to workplace injuries. Every employer and employee needs to understand what condition causes accidents.
The following are the most frequent causes of workplace accidents in Canada.
Overexertion is the most common culprit of Jobsite related injuries. It is a consequence of excess lifting, pulling, and pushing that beyond worker’s capacity. When the worker works in an awkward position or doesn’t work correctly, overexertion can occur.
However, it mostly happens when the worker doesn’t take rest breaks. If they push their body beyond their limit, the following repetitive movements can happen.
- Placing objects
Because of the tedious nature of the works, there may be strain or stress on some body parts. Overexertion often leads to back or neck injury, muscle sprains, heat exhaustion, and connective tissue injuries.
2. Slip and Fall Injuries in the Workplace
Slip and fall is another common reason for workplace injuries. Whatever the workplace is, the worker tends to fall on slippery surfaces. It mostly happens when the worker walks or stands on the wet surface, slick floors, and high-traffic corridors.
The following type of events mostly occurs in the slip, trip, and falls.
- Falling on the same level which includes slipping, tripping, falling on an object, falling while sitting, etc.
- Falling down to a lower level includes falling from a collapsing surface, ladders, roofs, or falling through surfaces.
- Due to slip or trip, when anyone catches themselves from falling down.
- Slip and falls while jumping to a lower level. It is different than others as the worker does it with control.
Non-stop hard work without sufficient sleep or taking a break can lead to workplace accidents. Workers can be mentally or physically exhausted due to lack of sleep, prolonged shifts, or long exertion period.
It is important to have a break to recover from exhausting manual labour. The consequence of fatigue can be more distressing than taking just a 10-minute break. Fatigue leads to many physical and work-related issues, including;
- General exhaustion
- Increased blood pressure
- Breathing issue
- Impaired judgment
- Slower reaction times
4. Improper Handling of Hazardous Materials
Protective clothing is more than essential for employees who work with hazardous materials. Not wearing PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and improper handling of hazardous materials is another cause of workplace accidents. These actions result in injuries like burns, cuts, blindness, etc.
Not taking enough water in the Jobsite leads to dehydration. If your body consumes less water than it loses, terrible consequences happen. In hot summer days, it can cause cardiac conditions or heat strokes.
Common symptoms of dehydration include; dark-coloured urine, cracked lips, dry mouth, and eyes. Also, it can cause kidney damage, coma, and even death. All these can be avoided by drinking adequate water in a day.
What to do?
Management should allow short breaks so that they can stay hydrated. They should focus on proper hydration and rest. Besides, the worker should avoid drinking alcohol or energy drinks. Also, there are some hydration “hacks” like keeping dampen cloths nearby to wipe sweats.
6. Acts of Workplace Violence
Violence in the Jobsite among co-workers is too common these days. These acts are not as rare as we think. There could be many reasons behind it, including office politics, arguments on a specific topic, etc.
As a result, the workers may have small to severe injuries. Peer mediation and conflict resolution could help to avoid such outbursts.
Crashes and collisions in the workplace are quite frequent in the workplace. Accidents could take place between cars, Lorries, trucks, etc. These incidents result in long-term consequences. That’s why; the employees need to wear seatbelts and follow other safety precautions.
8. Revelation to Loud Noise
Industrial deafness is too common in the workplace – old heavy industries and construction sites. Industrial workers are continuously exposed to loud noises at Jobsite. Most of them lose their hearing strength with time.
However, industrial deafness results in major outbursts further along the line. Wearing proper ear protection is essential to prevent this particular problem.
9. Bloodborne Pathogen Exposure
Healthcare workers are susceptible to potential bloodborne pathogens. They have to handle body fluids, blood, and OPIM (Other Potentially Infectious Material). Handling all these elements without proper care can lead to certain diseases like Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, and HIV.
Read Also: Workplace Injuries Facts & Causes
Prevention of Workplace Injuries
The OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) Canada is working to protect workers from injury in the workplace. They have established their own occupational health and safety regulations.
This regulation includes a range of topics – fall protection, acceptable lab procedures, etc. Both the employee and employer need to obey OSHA regulations to remove any potential hazards.
As demonstrated, there are countless ways people can injure themselves at work. We’ve already mentioned the top causes of workplace injuries to make you aware. Employers and employees could take preventive measures to avoid any potential harm.
Access to necessary safety equipment, regular risk assessments, and proper training can be a great help. You may not always be too conscious. But the least you can do is avoid unnecessary mishaps.