If you frequently apply for, or follow, job openings with PHR you will know that we get a lot of positions in industrial and/or outdoor environments. These types of jobs are very common here in Central Florida, and while wonderful for those who have skills and qualifications in these areas, they do tend to carry more risks than indoor, office-type positions. There are many ways you could be injured on any job, but here are the three most common injuries seen from the workplace, and how you can avoid them so as to not become another statistic:
- Musculoskeletal injuries. While this sounds long and intimidating, it can really be something as simple as badly pulling a muscle in your back, or injuring an arm or leg by overextending when doing heavy lifting or lots of bending. Since physical jobs usually require lots of these types of tasks, musculoskeletal injuries are very common, and while not always a long-term issue, can be very painful and actually take you out of work for ap period of time. The best way to avoid these types of injuries is by keeping yourself flexible and in good shape through routine exercise. Incorporating a safe, ability-appropriate weight lifting regimen can be very helpful as well. If possible get a trainer to help you put together a routine so you know you are training the right muscles without overexerting yourself and harming your body further.
- Slip and Fall. Tripping on stairs, slipping on wet floors, falling over materials or boxes, losing your footing on a ladder or falling while climbing into/out of a forklift or vehicle, are all possible ways (among many others) to get the same injuries. Slip and fall injuries can range from minor to severe, and depending on how and where you are hurt, you could end up temporarily out of your job, or could be completely disabled and unable to work your position any longer. The best way to stay away from these types of injuries is by being alert and careful, and by wearing appropriate gear. Never work while overly tired since this leads to more room for mistakes. Wear shoes that have good grips and fit you well. Talk to management if you see areas of the workplace that are prone to danger and not safe for employees, such as leaks that leave water on the floor, or areas where uneven flooring should be painted with signage.
- Repetition injuries. Repetitive motion over a long period of time can lead to muscular and skeletal injury if you don’t know what to watch for. Unlike musculoskeletal injuries, which are a one-time event, these types of issues happen over time from doing the same motion over and over again on the job. Examples include bending and lifting, routinely spending long amounts of time with poor posture and odd alignment (like craning your neck to look up and work while on a ladder), etc. Much like hairdressers and IT staff can suffer from carpal tunnel issues after years on the job, those in industrial positions can suffer from all kinds of problems after abusing their bodies unknowingly. Like we mentioned above, staying fit and in shape can help with this some, as can taking breaks to stretch and rest throughout the work day.
Hopefully these tips are helpful, and will keep you mindful of your personal safety at work. Still looking for a job that’s right for you? We are continually recruiting for employers throughout the Central Florida area and beyond. Apply for openings online or visit one of our convenient Polk County offices located in Winter Haven, Lake Wales, or our headquarters in Lakeland to get your resume in our hands and learn more about how we can help you get hired!