Category Archives: Ergonomics

The 5 Golden Rules Of Office Safety

Your office work may not be as risky as, let’ s say, building construction, but it still holds some not – so – obvious hazards. So what can basically happen when your job involves sitting on a chair and staring at a computer? Surprisingly, a lot. Even the administrative employees suffer severe injuries that could have been prevented with a little attention and workplace modifications. Here are a couple of ways to ensure the office safety and minimize the risks.

Golden Rules Of Office Safety

1. Mind Your Steps
Trips, slips and falls are some of the most common sources of office injuries. Did you know that employees are 2.5 times more likely to experience a fall in an administrative environment than anywhere else? The first step is to keep your office clutter – free. All free standing boxes and various items like stretching cords pilled on the floor constitute a serious danger. Cleaning the spills and splashes will also cut the chances of slippery floors. Always keep an eye on the floor while walking.

2. Protect Your Back When Lifting
Every now and then your office job may require an actual manual labour. It doesn’t matter what you need to lift, there are some key points that will prevent a back trauma. Before directly approaching the box, first move it with your feet. This will help you determine the weight of the box. Instead of bending at the waist and lifting with your back, preserve your posture straight. Your upper body and your legs should be in a same line. Then get the box and push it with your legs.

3. Safe Climbing
When it comes to inadvertent injuries, hard to reach shelving and storage units are an all – time classics. You need to get something that is placed too high? Use only approved ladders and don’t try to climb the shelving.

4. Use Technology Properly
Not taking precautions while using tools and machinery may not always result with an injury. In the rare cases when it happens, it can turn into a disaster. Use to tools in the right way and don’t take shortcuts. Don’t underestimate the risks, even if it’s about a simple thing like a stapler.

Golden Rules Of Office Safety2

5. Fire Safety
Cleaning chemicals and products should be stored in a well – ventilated room, away from heat or fire sources. Some cleaners are extremely inflammable. Be sure you know all the fire exists and you are fully prepared in case of emergency.
Although these are the most common examples of injury threats, there are many more safety issues that need to be discussed and that are specifically related to your work environment. Good planning and smart strategy are the best way to keep the level of risk at the office low.
You can consider assigning a safety committee or improving and establishing safety plan. Print the basic rules and place them on a spot where everyone can see them. Employees should be familiar with all the rules – from office cleaning and de – cluttering to fire safety tips.
For more helpful tips visit: industrial cleaners in Islington

PREVENTING BACK INJURIES IN THE WORKPLACE (GUEST POST)

 
A back injury is nothing to make light of. This type of injury can derail someone’s life, especially when it happens in the workplace. That’s why it’s important to take steps to avoid back injuries in the workplace. 

Here are some tips that will help to avoid back injuries

  • Always use correct techniques for bending, lifting, and moving loads
  • Exercising can help strengthen back and abdominal muscles, which will help support the back
  • Always wear comfortable, supportive, and nonslip shoes
  • Proper posture helps ease strain on the back
  • Losing weight helps put less strain on the back, so if you’re over weight, try losing some pounds to give your back a break

All employers in the United States adhere to Occupational Safety and Health Administration guidelines for proper techniques to be used for specific jobs. Following these techniques helps reduce back injuries. 

If lifting is a part of the job, here is important information to keep your back healthy even while lifting heavy objects.

  • Make sure there is enough room to lift the item. That means test its weight and make sure you’re able to do the lifting safely.
  • Get help for something that is too heavy or awkwardly shaped. Use a dolly to move heavy objects or split the load into multiple smaller loads if possible.
  • Keep loads close to the body when lifting to reduce strain.
  • Your feet should be shoulder-width apart to form a solid base of support
  • Grip what you’re lifting tightly
  • Always bend at the knees, not the waist
  • Do not rely on a back belt to provide necessary support for proper lifting; back belts do offer support, but shouldn’t be used as the only method of support
  • Take breaks when lifting multiple items
  • Avoiding twisting as you lift.
  • Use gloves when necessary for lifting to help with traction and protection

The Frequency of Back Injuries

According to the 
Centers for Disease Control, back injuries account for 20% of all injuries and illnesses in the workplace. These injuries cost 20 to 50 billion dollars each year. The most effective way to prevent back injuries is to implement an ergonomics program that helps redesign the work environment and work tasks to reduce any hazards associated with lifting, according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. 

There are many products that can help prevent back injuries in all types of industries. Whether an employee is working on a loading dock or in an office, ergonomic products help maintain proper positioning at all times so that the body stays in alignment. 

What Injuries Mean for Businesses

It’s important for businesses to keep abreast of the injuries that can and do occur in the workplace. Keeping accurate data of these cases is necessary so that all information is compiled and company heads are able to 
stay focused on the big data bottom line

This information can include everything from the number of injuries and incidents to customer satisfaction. Most of all, it helps everyone from employers to employees to stay safe and keep the flow of work steady. 



photo credit: 
Nicholas_T via photopin cc

Dana Rasmussen writes about workplace safety tips and how to prevent injuries. She’s a big fan of ergonomically correct computer accessories.

HOW TO ENSURE EYES’ HEALTH WHEN WORKING IN FRONT OF COMPUTER ALL DAY (GUEST POST)

 Most of the jobs nowadays require the use of computers. Some professionals even stay and work in front of the computer for 8-12 hours daily. Working hard does not mean compromising your health. Here are some of the things that you can do to protect your eyes from working at the computer for long hours. 

1. Adjust the Lighting of Computers

Use of proper lighting may help eye strain. When we are working in front of a computer for so many hours daily, we have to make sure to take care of our eyes. Eye strain is caused by excessive bright light, to avoid this, we can change the brightness of our monitor screen. Doing so will help us make our eyes comfortable. 

Aside from adjusting the light of our computers to make our eyes feel better. We should also have ambient lighting in our offices. Make sure to eliminate exterior lights and avoid working under overhead fluorescent lights. 

2. Upgrade Your Display

Office staff should always protect the health of their employers. If they have an extra budget they should replace the old-tube style monitor with flat-panel LCD. Screens of these monitors usually have an anti-reflective surface and are easier on the eyes of the user. 

Flicker of images is one of the major cause of computer eye strain. Which is not an issue with LCD screens. Selecting the highest resolution possible for the screen is the best solution to this problem. 

3. Modify Work Station

Another cause of eye strain is the improper posture into the computer when we are working. To prevent this, we can adjust our workstation and chair to the correct height. 

If our work requires looking at the printed page and then on the screen, then we should place the written pages on the copy stand. Light the copy stand properly and is adjacent to the monitor. We can also use desk lamp to see this written pages clearly. 

4. Keep Distance from Monitor

Always remember to keep distance at the monitor for it is really dangerous to our eyes. We should have a distance of at least 50-100cm from eyes. Offices should also purchase and use ergonomic furniture to enable their employers to position their computer 20-24 inches from the eyes. The most comfortable and ideal position of our head and neck to the screen should be about 10-15 degrees below our eyes. 

5. Consider Computer Eyewear (Use anti-radiation glasses)

Protect our eyes from too much light of the computer. The use of anti-radiation glasses will help a lot. The company may not afford it but if we have an extra budget, maybe we can buy it for ourselves. There are also normal computer glasses that we can wear. We can consult our eye care professional regarding this matter. These glasses will surely bring greatest comfort to our eyes. 

6. Blink More Often

When we are working in front of the computer, we should blink more often while we stare at the monitor. It is very important because blinking moistens our eyes to prevent dryness and irritation. To help us reduce the risk of dry eyes, we should blink 10 times every 20minutes.  

7. Take Frequent Breaks

Rest our eyes for 10-15 minutes and avoid looking at the monitor for a long time. We can take a rest for our eyes by closing our eyelids for a moment. We can also look at the distant objects for 10 seconds to relax our eyes.

 We should also make a supplementary of five-minute breaks throughout our work day. This will not only prevent the risk of our computer vision syndrome but can also help us avoid neck, back, and shoulder pain. When we are doing these five-minute breaks, we can stand, and do some stretching.  

8. Exercise Your Eyes

We can also use our mini breaks to exercise our eyes. Having an exercise for eyes help us avoid focusing fatigue that leads to eye strain. Looking far away from our computer monitors relaxes our focusing muscles inside the eye. Here are some exercises that we can do for our eyes: 

Exercise #1: Move eyes in circle from left to right. This should be 6-8 times and then repeat the process to the opposite side. 

Exercise #2: Move eyes from top to bottom for 10-12 times carefully. We have to do it slowly to avoid hurting our eye muscle. 

Exercise #3: Move eyes from left to right horizontally for 10-12 times. And do it opposite direction. 

 

About the Author:

Dawn Atkins loves reading, writing and traveling. It is her dream to set foot on Paris. She is currently a junior college student who works as a part-time contributor for bestessay.com. Dawn’s goal in life is to have her own business someday.

HOW TO AVOID INJURIES WHEN MOVING TO ANOTHER HOME (GUEST POST)

Moving at times can be emotionally difficult but it can be equally fun. It is possible that your body would be undergoing considerable stress. In some cases, the possibility of minor or severe injuries cannot be ruled out. Hiring a moving company is a good move to avoid such injuries. Here are some tips to keep you safer while moving.
 
Keep the box weight in mind while packing. Ensure that these boxes weigh less than 50 pounds. Any weight below 50 pounds can be easily lifted without a strain. If you feel strain while lifting the box, then it would be above 50 pounds. Ask the moving company that you have hired for lifting all heavy weights. However, if you do choose to move the boxes on your own, then you need to learn the proper way of lifting the boxes. Never bend over to lift a box, but rather sit on your heels and lift the boxes with your entire lower body. (You may consider using a lifting belt for support.)  Make sure that you have rented the proper equipment. This is necessary to save you from back strain and for moving larger items that weigh heavily. Always remember to use straps as they are needed for securing the boxes. Whenever you pass any item or box, make sure that the other person has a firm grip on it before you let it go. This is one common cause of accidents.
 
Before you start moving, take a close look at your new home. Inspect the entire property to find out for any possible dangerous areas. Always note any uneven sidewalk. Any steps that are present in the front walkway need to be clearly seen. Mark such steps with a chalk as often people are easily distracted while moving items and this may result in a fall or possible injury.If the walkway or the entrance to your new home comes out to be wet in any way, then use a mat. Any area that is more fragile needs to be made safe with a mat. This would be necessary to prevent a fall while moving items. Other possible hazards such as poles, posts or tree branches need to be looked at as they may pose a problem for your moving process. 
 
Always keep your children out of the process of moving. Keep them with a baby sitter or with a neighbor.   On the day you decide to move, always remember to wear the proper clothing and footwear that would assist rather than inhibit the process of moving. Do not wear loose sleeves to shirttails that would snag.Accidents occur without any warnings. So you need to be prepared for all situations.  Have information about the local hospital, doctor, dentist and pharmacy. With youngsters, you never know what would happen next. A chipped away tooth, a bloody lip or any possible infection may result. Hence, you need to know the nearby hospital. Always make sure that you do not run out of adult pain relievers, as well as children’s pain relievers.  Moving is a stressful time.

 Author Bio: Stephen Roshy is a passionate writer and blogger. He has years of experience in writing content on various industries. Useful information for this article is provided by http://www.help2movela.com. Get in touch with Mr. Roshy on Facebook , Twitter and Google+.

Fatal and Non-Fatal Injuries In The Workplace

This interesting infographic is from Rebecca Fox, of Westermans International, a UK-based welding company.  We appreciate this shared information and can learn what illnesses are prevelant in their respective industries.   

IS YOUR JOB THE “SECOND TIME AROUND?”

Many senior citizens have found themselves taking on a semi-retirement job.  Due to financial need or simply because they enjoy working, more and more seniors are working past the retirement age. 

Those who have certain professional experience from their first job, or the one they retire from, may use those skills in another setting.  Employers are happy to have older employees with experience, as they are very dependable and have a work ethic not found in many younger workers.  There is aways new technology they must learn, but they are willing and able to do so. 

Continuing to work helps keep our minds sharper.  We have to think about each step, especially when learning a new skill set.  Employers are conscious about the safety of all workers, but know that they must provide all employees with the personal protective equipment that fits the job duties, whether it is hearing protection, eye protection, gloves, or ergonomic products.  Older employees may be more susceptible to injuries, but their job descriptions must fit their physical abilities.

By working after age 65 into their 70’s, senior citizens have the feeling of accomplishment.  Most of them are just not ready for the rocking chair.  There are many activities to participate in that allow us to enjoy life, but when we are working, there is not only the sense of pride in doing a job well, but there’s also a paycheck that helps, as well.

It is sad that there are so many unwilling to work because they think a job is beneath them.  Too many citizens draw benefits that should be going to ones who really need and deserve them.  When you see an older person working at a grocery store, convenience store, or any other business, you should admire what they are doing.  You have no idea why they haven’t retired, so be happy for them that they are able to work.

Having worked in many different occupations during my life, I have enjoyed every one of them.  It would be hard to imagine what I would do if I didn’t have this part-time, semi-retirement type of job!  There are other things that fill our lives, our family and friends, but each day that I can work on this safety blog is a gift.  I have met so many friends through this website; ones from countries all over the world, and it is a pleasure to have had them share their safety tips with our readers.  In this type of work, there is no age barrier.  I have no idea the ages of our guest authors, nor do they know mine.

That’s the way all work should be: respect for your co-workers, no matter how young or old they are.  Everyone’s expertise is needed, and it’s amazing how much we can help each other if we just try.  Keep yourself safe at all times, and if you aren’t ready to retire, don’t.  Just find something that keeps you going and be proud that you still have your talents to give to the world.

Without the help of our team (of all ages) at Texas America Safety Company, my job would be very different, but thanks to their support and assistance when I need it, there’s always someone who lends a helping hand.  I can honestly say “work is better, the second time around”, and mean it. 

Pat

 

COMMON INJURIES AND THEIR TREATMENT (GUEST POST)

A large number of Americans are injured every year. While some get injured at home, others get workplace injury. We should have first aid kits both at home and work, and know how to use them.  Here are the most common home and workplace injuries:

Home Injuries Studies reveal that one-third of  total injuries take place at home. Common causes of home injuries are:

  • Falls-a major cause of home injuries and deaths. 
  • Burns and cuts-exposure to pointed objects leads to cuts and wounds. Stoves are the major sourse of burns.
  • Choking and suffocation-major instances of choking and suffocation may be related to food.

Workplace  injuries are also very common. While some injuries are a result of working in unhealthy and unsafe work environments, others happen due to uncomfortable office furniture, poor office layout and improper posture of employees. Here are some of the major workplace injuries:

  • Sprains
  • Strains
  • Tears 
  • Pain,  Bruises and Contusions
  • Cuts, punctures, and lacerations
  • Fracture
  • Multiple Traumatic Injuries
  • Burns
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Amputations
  • Chemical Burns, Corrosions.

How do you treat common injuries? If someone at home or the workplace gets an injury, you must immediately provide first aid to that person to prevent the situation from worsening. In case of bruises, apply heat, massage, and pain relieving cream to treat the injury. To effectively treat abrasions, first clean the wound with water and soap or use alcohol. After that, apply ointment with antibacterial properties on the affected area. For minor cuts, simply clean the area and apply the bandage. For sprains, relieve the pressure off the injured area and apply heat or ice. To alleviate the pain, use an anti inflammatory such as ibuprofen. Ice is the preferred treatment for inflammatory problems.

First aid mistakes to avoid:  When treating home and workplace injuries, make sure that you do not commit the following mistakes:  Applying butter to sooth the pain of a burn, as it can increase the risk of infection.  You must know when to apply a tourniquet to treat bleeding, as it can cause permanent damage to the limbs. Applying heat to sprains, strains, and fracture can increase swelling and slow down the healing process.  Moving someone injured in a car accident away from the scene. If the person has internal injuries, moving him can cause paralysis or death.  Treating allergic reactions caused by bee sting at home. Seek professional help to prevent consequences, such as anaphylactis.

Taking first aid training can help you treat home and workplace injuries quite effectively.  Call a poison control center if you know a child has ingested a poisonous substance.  If you are unsure about treating any injury,  call 9-1-1 for professional help.

This article was submitted by Carol of http://www.adamssafety.com/.  We thank Carol very much for safety information we all can use. pb

TIPS TO KEEP YOU SAFE AT WORK (GUEST POST)

 Getting to work safely, working in a well-managed environment and returning home safe in the evening is every employees right – but not all the responsibility for this can be held by your employer. It is true your employer had a duty of care to protect employees from danger whilst at work, but as individuals we also have a personal responsibility to ensure we do not place ourselves (or our colleagues) in any danger. 

You will find that keeping safe at work is often common sense, so here a few tips based on common mistakes, which will hopefully make you think twice and help prevents accidents and injuries: 

1- Understand and minimise the risks

Before you commence any task, stop for a moment and consider the task which is about to be undertaken. By doing so you will create an opportunity to briefly analyse the individual components of the task and highlight any aspects which could potentially cause injury. If you feel a safer alternative is available this should always be discussed and then implemented. 

2. Use mechanical aides wherever possible

It is a well-known fact that the majority of back injuries at work are caused by incorrect lifting techniques or by individuals lifting more weight than they can comfortably manage. I’m sure we have all been guilty of this from time to time.  Unfortunately this not only leads to injury for the individual but also to time off work and loss of production for the company. Therefore, if your company offers a training session on manual handling, it is strongly advisable (and often mandatory) that you attend. This can provide you with knowledge on safe lifting techniques that can also be used in the home, and save you from any potential injury.   

3.Wear the correct clothing and footwear (P.P.E)

You wouldn’t dream of turning up to work at farm in a bikini and heels, would you? So why would it be deemed acceptable to work on, for e.g. a building site or indoors as a cleaner, without the correct clothing or footwear protection. Although this sounds like common sense many people shirk wearing the correct items as they deem them unnecessary, when reality safety boots will protect your feet from heavy objects or nails through the soles and hard hats will protect your head against knocks and falling objects, with safety goggles protecting our eyes from chemical splashes. Personal Protective Equipment is important, therefore if you feel you would benefit from any of these items but haven’t been issued any; don’t start the task without first speaking to your employer. 

4. If working alone ensure you are aware of the procedures – and ensure you adhere to them.

If you have to work alone, as many people do, your organisation should have a process in place which you will be expected to follow. This usually involves regular communications with a control centre or named individual so you can ‘check in’ at the beginning if your shift, again at set times throughout and ‘check out’ at the end, and if a call is missed someone will be dispatched to check on you. If you currently work alone and don’t have a process to follow it may be worth discussing setting one up with your employer, as it could one day save your life. 

5. Read and understand the risk assessment.

If you are asked to sign a risk assessment before you commence a task then please ensure you read, understand and appreciate it’s importance – this information is provided for you, so you are aware of any risks involved and how best to mitigate them, don’t brush these documents aside as just paperwork. 

Remember when arriving at work – staying aware, assessing the task and minimising the risks are all that are required to keep you safe in the workplace.  

 

Author Bio: Vivienne Ollis Journalist & Blogger for http://www.essexinsulation.co.uk

HOW TO TEACH WORKPLACE VIOLENCE SAFETY (GUEST POST)

Workplace safety involves a few topics such as personal hygiene, and personal safety against physical violence to name the most important ones. These apply to almost all fields of work whereas accidents by materials happen only in certain industries. Proper orientation and awareness and also education toward workplace safety need to be taught to all employees in order to avoid any hazard in the workplace.

Personal Health Safety: All companies should educate their employees on the relevance of personal hygiene, diseases and the most probable causes of such diseases. People working in laboratories and industries regularly come in contact with chemicals which could be allergens or irritants. Therefore, employees need to be aware of the use of protective gloves, masks and skin cream etc. in order to safeguard themselves from these health issues.

How to Teach Personal Health Safety: · Posters can be hung at places where workers wash their hands, at rest rooms, and where they change their uniforms and all. A seminar or some talks can be arranged to make the employees aware of the risks involved in their workplace in case they do not take care of themselves properly.  Tours to such other companies can be organized in order to show the workers how other companies manage to be risk-free.

Slip and fall safety: This is one of the most common causes for workplace accidents. Several steps can be taken to prevent these accidents. It is highly essential to be aware of the possible spots of danger namely water spills, spots of grease or oil. Every employee needs to know these spots and be on alert when negotiating these places.  Slopes or low-lying areas pose dangers and employees should wear proper foot wear which would save them from the possible mishaps.   Hanging posters or holding meetings, or awareness programs would help a great deal in protecting oneself from workplace accidents.

Workplace Violence Safety: Workplace safety is a point of serious concern since violence could happen due to misbehavior’s of other employees let alone the accidents that happen by environmental conditions.

How to Teach Workplace Violence Safety: · Pamphlets and seminars would be of a great help to employees. Since workplace violence is a sensitive issue workers should have a provision to complain  anonymously about the issues they face at the workplace.  Employees could also hold group discussions on these issues and share the possible remedies that they can think of.  Visuals always give extra effect to all things. Showing videos on workplace violence would have a great impact on workers.

Ergonomics: Ergonomics is the scientific discipline which concerns with the understanding of humans and other systems. In simple terms, this would involve keeping things at the proper heights in the workplace to prevent muscular, skeletal and other injuries. Ergonomics could also be taught to employees by way of distributing pamphlets, by holding talks and seminars for workers etc. Companies could also bring ergonomic experts to personally teach the employees how to take care of themselves while at work.

This article was sent to us by Christy Nelson of buyessays.us.

WORKROOM IMPROVEMENTS TO PROMOTE LEARNING (GUEST POST)

 Learning should never be confined in the four corners of the classroom. As long as people live, they will seek intelligence. As Aristotle said, “all men by nature desire knowledge.” After graduating, people depend on their work to satisfy their desire for knowledge. How they perform in their companies, have an effect on how much they boost their cognitive ability.

But how can their jobs be conducive to learning if their workroom does not promote better work performance? Ergonomics has a lot to say on this. Various studies show that cognitive performance is linked to environmental design and human factors.

Few renovations and improvements can help employees do better in their jobs and satisfy their desire for knowledge. To help you, here are a few ergonomic tips that ignite learning in a working environment:

Workroom Layout

During a busy day at the office, do you find yourself going from the printer, copy machine and back to your station and feel easily worn-out? You’ll never perform well if your workroom is not fit to human factors. Every important tools should be convenient to reach. Otherwise, it can limit people’s action and interrupt work flow. Tables and chairs should also fit the height of the user to avoid posture problems. Adequate space under the workstation is important to leave room for the feet to relax.

Room Design

Why do you think Google, one of the best companies to work for is very appealing among job seekers? It’s because everyone loves to work in a working environment that promotes fun, creativity and learning. Just imagine working in office like of Google. For sure, you will feel inspired to go to work every day.

But not all are as rich as Google. To get the same effect, apply visual ergonomics in your workroom. A well designed room helps promote learning and better performance. According to the color of psychology, green represents energy, power and rejuvenation. It is known to help people avoid eye-strain because of its soothing effect. Paint this color on your walls, or add green accents, like fresh plants to get your employees inspired to work.

Lighting

Productivity is related to light condition. Wrong light system can cause eye-strain and eventually, physical exhaustion. Monitor glare is the major roots of eye fatigue so light source should be ceiling suspended and does not directly hit the work station. To control light from an outside source, use a window blind or shade. No matter how visually pleasing the lights in your office are, if it is too dark or light that you squint to properly see what you are working at, it won’t do much in boosting productivity.

Eye-to-screen Distance

Your computer monitor emits light. This also causes eye-strain. Ergonomics tells you to keep a safe distance from your monitor when working in front of the computer for long hours. How far is far? Well it is hard to tell, but experts suggest that users have to avoid getting closer than the resting point of vergence (RPV). This is the point when the eyesight projected in both retinas are almost the same. It is the safe zone to avoid double images and eye fatigue. Farther is better! but make sure that you are comfortable reading the texts. In the end, it is in your judgment to tell, which distance fits your work condition. You have to consider the screen and font size.

Task Design

Cognitive growth in workplace is associated to the amount of task that people do, and amount of resting period they get. That is why tasks should be properly designed to fit the human condition. If there are too much workload, employees should get ample break to regain energy. Managers are responsible in keeping the productivity of their workers by knowing their capabilities and limitations. Enough social interaction is also healthy, to perform better at work.

Why do you think employees often use “lack of growth” in their resignation letters? That is because they don’t feel growing in terms of experience, performance and knowledge. Work performance is linked to employee’s cognitive development. To make employees learn new things, you have to promote productivity in a workroom.

Although ergonomics is not the sole reason for human intellectual growth, the tips above can help promote learning in a working environment. 

Author’s Bio

Ethan Harvell is a blogger and writer for a corporate magazine. He has also contributed articles for different newsletters in various websites. He gets most of his writing experience from bestessays, a writing company, where he is currently employed.