There are plenty of highly-dangerous professions in South Carolina, including agricultural, forestry and fishing jobs. Transportation work, including pizza delivery, is also more dangerous than people realize. There are also thousands of people working in industrial or manufacturing professions who are only a tiny timing mistake away from suffering a severe injury. Those who work in more dangerous careers generally expect better wages and good benefits packages to compensate them for the risk they accept when doing their jobs. However, even those in seemingly-safe professions end up developing medical conditions that affect their employment and their overall quality of life.
Those in white-collar or office-based careers, including administrative assistants and billing specialists, for example, typically think that their work will be safe and uneventful. Yet, office workers have many safety concerns on the job, including the three below that are the cause of many lost-time incidents for those in office professions. The following are the biggest risks for those who spend most of their work hours in an office environment.
Repetitive stress disorders
The longer that someone spends typing, holding a phone or filing paperwork, the more likely it is that the repetitive use of their hands and arms will affect their job performance. Carpal tunnel syndrome and similar repetitive use disorders can make it very difficult for people to continue performing the same work as efficiently as they once did, particularly because they have both pain symptoms and reduced range of motion. A lack of proper ergonomic support and repetitive job functions increase this risk.
Slips, trips and falls
Some businesses have multiple stories, which means that workers may have to go upstairs to reach the records area or the conference room. Anyone rushing while working could slip or trip and fall down the stairs, which could result in serious injuries. Even a same-level fall on the job could lead to broken bones, soft tissue injuries or brain injuries that render workers in need of medical care and time away from their jobs.
Many office workers have to use equipment such as computers and copy machines throughout the day. Needing to adjust the electrical supply for any of those devices could put someone at risk of a shock. Older equipment could also short out or have frayed wires, both of which could lead to serious electrical injuries.
Workers’ compensation benefits can protect those hurt in office settings by covering the cost of their medical treatment and providing disability benefits to replace their wages until they can return to their jobs. Understanding the unique hazards in different work environments may help employees reduce their injury risk and recognize when they have a right to file a workers’ compensation claim.