Back Injury Prevention Safety Talk
A back injury on the job is a very common occurrence. When there are lifting projects and other tasks at hand, it is almost impossible to prevent it 100% of the time. It has been recorded that over one million workers over a year's time span suffer from some type of back injury on the job, making back injury prevention all the more needed.
For every 5 incidents that happen in the workplace, one of those is said to be a back injury. Worker’s compensation claims are made up largely of back injury claims each year. But, there are rules and regulations that can be put into action to help protect the safety of everyone.
How Does An Employee Injure Their Back?
There are many instances when working that you can get injured and especially injure your back. Even the simplest of tasks can pose a threat of an injury. That is why there are things such as insurance, regulations, and workers’ compensation. Some of the most common ways that people endure a back injury on the job are:
Continually Lifting On The Job
Not Bending At The Knees When Lifting
Trying To Lift An Item Alone That Is Too Heavy
Stepping Wrong While Carrying An Item
Twisting Wrong While Lifting An Item
These are just some of the many ways that back injuries can occur. There are numerous ways that back injuries can happen, so it is important to be aware of the tasks that are being done. Read on to learn our back injury prevention safety tips and recommendations to use on the job.
Safety While Lifting
Lifting boxes and different items may not be able to be avoided during your job. When you do need to lift and move items, you should do so with great caution in order to avoid an injury while doing so. Some of the ways that you can do that are:
Be Aware- Make sure you are cautious and make yourself aware of the risks that are at hand. Do your job with caution and knowledge of the correct way to lift.
Take Breaks- If you have been lifting for a while, as you get tired you are more likely to be injured. When you begin to feel weak, you should take a break and resume when you feel better.
Posture- Using the correct posture when lifting is the number one key to avoiding an injury. Stooping and twisting will only result in a possible injury. Use your knees and not your back when you are lifting on the job.
Preventing Back Injuries in the Workplace
Getting hurt on the job can pose an issue for you and the workplace. Trying to find the necessary steps to help and minimize the risks is key to keeping things running smoothly. It is in the best interest of everyone involved to have the right back injury prevention guidelines set in place.
In the workplace, there are some things that can be put in place to help protect the employees and the company. By doing everything you can to help prevent an injury the better. Guidelines that are set into place should be followed by all employees while working.
1. Wear Personal Protective Equipment
If part of the job for employees is lifting boxes and other items, heavy or not, the workplace should provide the equipment needed to keep them safe. Although, there has been proof that back braces and belts don’t provide as much protection as once thought. The employee may take it upon themselves to stretch before starting and using reasonable judgment when on the job. Use equipment for lifting or ask for assistance when needed.
2. Eliminate Unnecessary Lifting
To avoid back injuries on the job, it is recommended that you eliminate as much manual lifting as you can. The company should make lifting equipment available so the lifting is minimized. Dollies, forklifts, and other similar equipment can be beneficial to protect the employees. Protecting you as the employee, from back injuries in any way possible.
3. Guidelines By Administration
It is ideal to make sure that the employees who are lifting heavy items are fully capable of the job that you have them doing. The administration should make rules clear about weight limits for lifting and when to ask for help. A supervisor should be involved with weight limits over 100 lbs., to help ensure optimum safety of the employees.
4. Engineering Controls
The setup of the warehouse or area that the employees are working in should be set up to benefit them and make their job as safe as possible. All shelving and storage areas should be at a reasonable level to lessen the height at which they are lifting objects. The necessary equipment to lift and move boxes should be made available when possible.
What Happens If You Hurt Your Back On The Job?
There are times when no matter how safe you are, injuries happen. It is important to make sure you report an injury or a problem right away. Go and receive the help you need immediately.
Make the superintendent or foreman aware of what has just happened so an official report can be written up. You will have to fill out a form known as a C-3.
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