Workplace accidents are more common than people imagine. Whether you work in an office or site, it’s essential to ensure your working environment is safe. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the workplace accident rate diminished because more and more people started working from home. Still, now, with people returning to workplaces all around the world, the number of dangerous events starts to grow.
In the U.K, 142 workers lost their lives after suffering severe injuries at their workplaces between 2020 and 2021. The most common type of accident was falling from a height, taking 35 lives in the past two years. There are multiple causes of workplace accidents related to an unsafe working environment and inadequate safety plans that companies present to their teams. Business owners must periodically ensure their employees don’t confront life-threatening situations during work. At the same time, employees are required to follow safety instructions and report every breach of the rule.
As an employee, ensure you don’t put your life at risk and use all the protective supplies, such as special equipment and working suits. It’s vital to protect yourself as well as possible because workplace accidents can cause severe and even fatal injuries. Here are some examples:
- Cuts and Lacerations;
- Muscle strains;
- Injuries caused by falling objects;
- Intoxication caused by inhaling toxic fumes;
- Industrial deafness, caused by prolonged exposure to loud noise;
- Fractures and broken bones;
- Spine damage.
All the injuries listed above can cause death or have severe consequences if they are not treated on time. So, to ensure you are protected during work, take all the precautions and pay attention to every little detail and action around you.
But even if you stick to the safety plan and follow all the recommendations, accidents still can happen. Here are the most common workplace accident causes:
Slips and falls
Slip and fall accidents are widespread but very unlikely to be fatal. They usually don’t cause severe injuries, but it doesn’t mean you need to ignore the safety rules. The worst part of these kinds of accidents is they can happen anywhere, whether you work in an office, shop, or on a site, being hard to prevent. Here are some factors that can cause slips and falls at work:
- Wet floors;
- Cords left all over the walking surface;
- Poor light;
- Scattered debris.
Crashes and collisions
Crashes and collisions are hazardous accident causes and can have long-term consequences. Whether your job requires driving big or small vehicles, respect all the recommendations. For example, employers must ensure that the seatbelt or other safety precautions are in good condition and periodically verified.
These accidents may cause serious injuries and put employees’ lives at risk. You can experience severe pains, fractures, internal bleeding and brain injuries that can be fatal or cause further health problems.
Falls from heights
Falling from height was the leading cause of workplace accidents between 2020 and 2021 in the United Kingdom. Construction industry employees are the most exposed to these kinds of accidents. Besides, they work every day under the pressure of accidental falling.
Falling from elevated surfaces can cause multiple severe or even fatal injuries. The main causes of falling are poorly built structures, inappropriate working conditions, distractions or improper use of working equipment.
Employers must provide their teams with information and training about the pre-established safety plan to prevent these accidents. Employees have to follow the rules and understand the importance of using the safety equipment properly.
How to overcome the consequences of a workplace accident
Recovery may be a long-term and challenging process after being the victim of a workplace accident, so here are some tips that can help you manage better the recovery period:
Ask your family and friends for help
During difficult times, having someone to trust can help you overcome the trauma faster. After an accident, your family and friends are the first ones who can offer you the support you need. Workplace accident victims often refuse to talk about what happened, isolating themselves from the outside world. But this kind of behaviour can worsen their mental health and block the recovery process.
After suffering an accident, the best thing you can do is ask your loved ones for help. They are the people who will do anything for you, no matter the hour or the day. Besides, you may need financial support for the medical care and recovery expenses. Don’t hesitate to ask your family and friends for loans, even if it will be difficult at first. You may consider it inappropriate to ask for money because you are an independent adult. But, remember you can return the loan after you are completely recovered.
Claiming compensation after a workplace accident is essential because you will need the money for medical expenses, such as medication and extra treatments.
After a traumatic event, you may feel disoriented, scared and lost, without knowing where to start the claiming compensation process. But you are not alone. For a more efficient experience, choose to hire a specialised personal injury attorney, who will inform you about the procedures, documents, and trial details. Besides, they can tell you how much compensation you can receive based on the severity of your injuries.
Pay attention to your mental health
Accidents are traumatic events, and being a victim can considerably affect your physical and mental life. So, paying attention to all the mental health changes after a workplace accident is essential for a faster recovery. Many people experience PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder) and fight anxiety or severe depression after an accident. Here are some symptoms and signs that must alert you:
- Recurrent distressing flashbacks regarding the accident;
- Insomnia and nightmares;
- Negative thoughts;
- Panic attacks;
- Lack of interest in activities you used to enjoy;
- Self-destructive behaviour.
These symptoms can transform your behaviour and affect everyday interactions, so it’s crucial to seek specialised medical care. They will help you understand your emotions better and provide the necessary medication.