There are numerous factors that can increase a worker’s risk of being hurt on the job. Everything from the industry they work in to their age can put someone in danger of a severe accident that results in lost wages, significant medical expenses and emotional distress.
Even the hours you work could also be exposing you to a higher risk of a workplace accident.
Irregular hours, long shifts
Working long hours and shift work are two types of schedules that can be hazardous to employee safety. People in these situations can experience worker fatigue, which can be very unsafe.
When people do not get adequate, consistent rest, their judgment and memory can be impaired; they can get confused more easily; and they can have slower reaction times. These symptoms can lead to mistakes and oversights that put individuals in danger, particularly those who work in industries like:
- Medical services
- Warehouse management
Employees who work shift hours or have been working extended hours can be more likely to slip, lose focus or make mistakes that ultimately put their lives in danger.
Combatting fatigue to stay safe
If you work odd or extended hours, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself. Some ways you can stay safe and avoid a serious workplace accident include:
- Taking scheduled breaks
- Refraining from operating heavy machinery if you have not had adequate rest
- Visiting a doctor if you are having trouble sleeping
- Making sure you work in good lighting and comfortable temperatures
- Refraining from using unsafe stimulants and drugs to try and stay alert
These measures can help you prioritize your health and safety. And if an employer interferes with these measures or denies you the right to a safe work environment, you may file a complaint to correct things.
There may be no way to prevent every accident from happening at work; however, identifying the factors that increase the threat of an injury-causing incident can help workers proactively minimize their risk.