Top Office Safety Hazards to Be Aware of in 2021
When people think about workplace safety, they usually focus on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements, particularly in industrial workplaces. However, injuries and workplace illnesses can happen in any environment, including offices.
By understanding the top office safety hazards, you can identify areas that may need improvement in your workplace. If you want to make sure that you’re keeping your workforce safe, here are some of the biggest safety issues that can appear in office environments.
Slips, Trips, and Falls
When it comes to common workplace injuries that can occur in any environment, including offices, slips, trips, and falls are big ones. All offices can have potential tripping hazards, such as computer cables or power cords running across the floor or boxes set too close to walkways. Stairs can also be dangerous, particularly if employees need to carry items between floors using them.
During the colder months, snow-covered or icy walkways leading to and from the building could be slip hazards. During the entire year, rain can also be dangerous, as water can make it easier for someone to lose traction.
Water tracked into the building also creates slip hazards. This is especially true if you have smooth flooring, like tile, vinyl, or laminate.
If you want to reduce the likelihood of slips, trips, and falls:
- Keep walkways clear of items.
- Don’t stack boxes on floors near commonly used paths, and make sure that cables don’t cross through walkways whenever possible.
- If a cable does have to run across the floor, make sure it is fully secured, reducing the chances that it’ll become a trip hazard.
Also, have water and ice warning signs that you can use indoors or outside. If water does end up on the floor, have a sign placed nearby immediately and work to get it cleaned up quickly.
In many cases, office workers spend most of their day working at their desks. If attention isn’t paid to ergonomic position, strains and other posture or repetitive motion injuries can occur over time.
Ideally, offices should make workstation features as adjustable as possible. Being able to shift chairs, desks, and keyboards can reduce injuries, allowing employees to set them in the best spot for them.
Similarly, telephone headsets can reduce injuries. Trying to cradle a phone between your ear and shoulder can lead to neck and back strain. With a headset, that position is unnecessary.
Since most office work is either computer or paper-based, eye strain is common. If a person has issues focusing, they may experience notable discomfort.
Make sure that light levels are appropriate within the entire workplace, and give employees access to task lighting to personalize their space. Reduce glare by setting monitors just below eye level, and make sure that employees can take regular breaks, allowing them to focus their eyes on something other than screens or small-print paperwork regularly.
We Can Help Your Team With Safety
Ultimately, small adjustments can make offices much safer. If you’re like to learn more about how you can protect your employees from injuries, the team at VB can help. Contact us today.