Heads Up! Watch Out for These Workplace Hazards

In 2015 and 2016, there were over 1.1 million claims made due to work-related injuries and illnesses in the United States and Canada. There is even a chance that this number could be higher, as not all claims are approved. According to the American Society of Safety Engineers, workplace injuries could be reduced by 50% with the implementation of a safety program. By including a few extra preventative measures, you could be saving your business from a costly compensation claim. OSHA estimates that U.S. employers pay about $1 billion per week in direct costs from these claims. Even worse, the indirect costs, such as lost productivity, hiring and training a replacement, time spent handling the claim, and overtime expenses can outweigh the direct costs.


Slips, Trips, and Falls

Slips, trips, and falls are the second-leading cause of injury in the workplace. According to the National Floor Safety Institute, injuries from falls lead to over 8 million trips to the emergency room. A survey of 369 facility maintenance professionals found that 92% of them kept floor mats in their entryways (where 51% of falls occur), but most were not protecting other problem areas. Employee and customer walkways, transition areas, and around equipment and machines each account for 14-24% of falls. Floor mats can reduce the risk of slip and fall accidents happening, especially when they are made from the right material and sized properly for their locations. As an added bonus, matting will also protect your floors from wear, maintain cleanliness, and contribute to good indoor air quality (IAQ).

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Indoor Air Quality

People spend about 87% of their time indoors. Maintaining IAQ is significant for the health of building occupants, especially employees who spend several hours at a day in their workplaces. While the air everyone breathes needs to be fresh, it also needs to smell that way too. A survey found that 71% of consumers perceive odor as a sign of improper cleaning, especially in the restrooms, which can result in lost business. However, the American Academy of Dermatology found that about 2 million people suffer from fragrance sensitivities. Scented air-freshening solutions that are low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or non-scented, neutralizing options that do not contain VOCs are an excellent way to maintain good IAQ while also avoiding unpleasant smells. Choosing the right size unit will ensure that it works properly, and does not over-concentrate and irritate individuals.


Contact with Sharps

Many people with medical conditions like diabetes, migraines, cancer, and allergies use sharps, such as needles, lancets, syringes, or scalpels for treatment. When individuals need to administer medication while away from home, they may not have access to a safe form of disposal and could end up leaving used items in the communal trash bin. When someone is accidentally stuck by a used sharp, that person has 6-30%, 2%, and 0.3% chances, respectively, of contracting Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Making sharps disposal bins available means users always have a safe place to leave their used items and others will not be exposed to them.


“I Didn’t See It Coming”

Lastly, there are some workplace hazards that cannot always be prevented. Employees may have a lapse in judgment, become distracted, or too focused to pay attention to their surroundings. Walking-into injuries and reaction injuries (caused by catching oneself during a slip) can lead to bumps, bruises, cuts, and scrapes. For times like these, having a well-stocked first aid kit at the ready can keep an unfortunate situation from becoming worse.

Making a few additions to your facility can make a big difference for the safety and wellbeing of your staff and visitors. Matting goes further than just preventing slips and falls, air fresheners can treat odor without hurting IAQ, a sharps bin can prevent devastating accidents, and first aid kits are there for surprises. Call Citron Hygiene and see how we can help you today!


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