During the month of June, the U.S. recognizes National Safety Month by calling attention to workplace safety. In addition to our emphasis on safety topics specific to Mauser Packaging Solutions, we join with other companies across the U.S. by focusing on weekly topics provided by the National Safety Council.
National Safety Month – Week Three – Injury Prevention
Accidents are unplanned occurrences that result in injuries, illness, death and loss of property and/or production. Practicing situational awareness in the workplace can help prevent accidents before they occur. By learning to identify hazards, understanding what controls are available, knowing what controls to use and then acting on that information, employees can protect themselves and others from injury.
The most common types of injuries can vary depending on individual work environments but awareness of the most common types of injuries can help employees take action to avoid accidents. The top 3 workplace injuries and illnesses involving days away from work in 2020 as identified by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor were:
- Exposure to harmful substances or environments
Due to the emergence of COVID-19 in 2020, this category moved from being ranked sixth to being the leading cause of work related injury or illness and demonstrates how external factors can impact risk areas in the workplace. In addition to contagious and infections diseases, such as COVID-19, this category also includes exposure to electricity, radiation and noise, temperature extremes, air and water pressure changes, oxygen deficiency and a traumatic or stressful event.
- Overexertion, bodily reaction
Overexertion and bodily reactions have long been the leading cause of work-related injuries and illnesses, with the recent exception of 2020 due to COVID-19. Overexertion occurs as the result from excessive physical effort directed at an outside source (lifting, pushing, holding, harrying, throwing) or repetitive motion of microtasks resulting in stress or strain on some part of the body.
- Slips, trips and falls
Slips trips and falls is the second leading cause of unintentional injury related deaths (including non-workplace injuries). In some industries, falls can be the leading cause or workplace fatalities. Falls don’t have to occur from a high level to cause a severe injury or fatality. In 2020, approximately 17% of workplace fatalities from fall occurred from falls at the same level.
These three categories account for more than 75% of all nonfatal injuries and illnesses involving days away from work. By being aware of these potential risk areas, employees can proactively take action to implement and practice safety controls that reduce the occurrence of accidents.