No matter how long you have held your current job, you could face serious hazards every day. You may not think too much about any risks or potential for illness or injury because you do not work directly with machinery or on sites that pose obvious threats. However, you could still end up injured on the job.
Your employer has a duty to ensure your safety and well-being and that of your co-workers while at work. This means that he or she should pay attention to the various hazards your workplace could present. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration outlines five types of work-related hazards that need addressing.
The five hazards
No matter the type of job you have, you could face one or more of these hazards on a daily basis. As a result, you could easily end up suffering from an illness or injury even though you do not necessarily hold a position ordinarily considered dangerous. You may want to remain on the lookout for the following hazards:
- Chemical hazards: You face chemical hazards at work if you come in contact with silica dust, pesticides, flammable liquids, acids, carbon monoxide and others. Exposure to chemical hazards may not always be obvious.
- Ergonomic hazards: Any job can take a toll on someone’s body, even one where you sit all day. Ergonomic hazards refer to the strain your body endures while on the job, like stooping, repetitive motions, lifting heavy objects and other actions that can cause issues over time.
- Biological hazards: You could suffer harm from these hazards if you come in contact with animal waste, blood, other bodily fluids, mold, viruses and fungi.
- Safety hazards: This type of hazard typically comes to mind first. Injuries could result from safety hazards like confined spaces, frayed electrical cords, spills, falls from heights, machinery and cluttered work areas.
- Physical hazards: Physical hazards could also cause considerable harm without your immediate knowledge. Working in conditions with extreme heat or cold, continual exposure to loud noise, radiation exposure and working outdoors could all act as physical hazards.
You may face the risk of injury or illness more often than you think. If you do end up suffering due to an accident on the job or your work environment, you may have reason to pursue workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits are not always easy to obtain, and speaking with an attorney may help you understand the process and address any delays or denials that could come about.