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Most common workplace accidents

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When a workplace accident happens, the is a reason behind it. There are few workplace accidents which are very common in different workplaces.


(1) Slips, trips and falls

About one third of the workplace accidents happen because of slips, trips and falls. It may result in head and back injuries, cuts, lacerations, broken bones, pull muscles and sprains.

Slips mostly happen because of wet or oily surfaces; lose maps, flooring or rugs; occasional spills; weather hazards and other reasons. Trips generally happens because of poor lighting, obstructed view, clutter, uneven walking surfaces, wrinkled carpeting, uncovered cables, and other reasons.

(2) Transportation and vehicle related accidents

During transportation and because of vehicles, different workplace accidents may happen. They generally include being struck or run over by a vehicle, being struck by objects falling from a vehicle, falling from a vehicle and being crushed by an overturned vehicle. Whether it is a manufacturing environment, agricultural or any other types of workplace, these accidents may happen at any place. Such accidents have two distinct kinds-

  • On the road-workers may be injured while transporting objects from one place to another. Workers may also suffer injury while repairing roads and doing other things in the traffic zones.
  • In the workplace- people who operate vehicles and equipment may injure themselves or may also eat cause injury to other people and pedestrians.

(3) Caught in or struck by moving machinery

If some machineries in the workplace is not properly guarded it can result in different workplace accidents. If somehow a worker is caught in or struck by such exposed moving parts, it may cause serious problems. Sometimes flying objects from machines also result in accidents in workplaces. That is why machines need protective guards. Such accidents because of moving machinery may result in severe injuries, including crushed hands and arms, blindness, severed fingers and other horrible injuries. Such mechanical problems are often seen in three places

  • The point of operation- this is the place where the work is performed and which includes cutting, boring, shaping and forming.
  • Power transmission apparatus- it is the components of the mechanical system that transmits energy to the part of the machine that does the work. They may include flywheels, bells, pulleys, connecting rods, chains, couplings, camps, spindles, gears etc.
  • Other moving parts- these are the parts that move along with the machine.

(4) Fire and explosion

This is another workplace accident that may happen in different workplaces. It is more common in workplaces, which has the factors like faulty gas lines, improperly stored combustible materials, poor pipe fitting and because of open flames. Such accidents may cause damage to the respiratory system, potential disfigurement and different degrees of burns.

Generally, four types of injuries are seen in case of fire and explosions-

  • Primary blast injuries- such injuries may include injury of body tissues, ears, lungs and the GI tract. It happens because of the pressure on body tissues.
  • Secondary blast injuries- happens when flying objects strike nearby workers
  • Tertiary blast injuries- it can lift table from the ground and fly them into surrounding objects
  • Quaternary blast injuries- any other injuries that happen as a result of an explosion

(5) overexertion and repetitive stress injuries

Overexertion injuries are related to pulling, pushing, lifting, carrying, holding and throwing. Such injuries not only causes financial losses, but also includes loss of productivity, millions in direct costs and millions in annual health benefit payout costs. Different musculoskeletal disorders result from overexertion. Repetitive stress injuries may include more than 100 different job induced injuries because of wear and tear of the body, which results in a huge loss in health and financial terms.

1. Workplace Injury, Illness and Fatality Statistics
2. Accidents in the workplace