Many people in California do not realize how dangerous it can be to work in an office. A significant number of workers’ compensation benefits claims involve injuries caused by slips, trips, falls and other occupational hazards posed by office surroundings. However, proper housekeeping can mitigate almost all the risks..
Trip hazards include cords and cables snaking across walkways, random objects or boxes that are not placed in storage areas, personal items like handbags and briefcases, and desk or cabinet drawers that are left open. Slips can cause serious fall injuries, mostly caused by spills that are not cleaned and highly polished floors. Top-heavy filing cabinets that are improperly loaded can tip over and cause injuries.
Unsafe lifting techniques can cause musculoskeletal injuries, and putting a chair on top of a table instead of using a stepladder to reach higher can lead to accidents that cause fractured bones. Overloading electrical circuits by using multiplugs and extension cords as permanent rather than temporary fixes can cause fires and electrical shocks. If those workers who spend hours typing on keyboards do not take frequent breaks or alternate their tasks, they may end up with repetitive strain injuries that can cause chronic pain.
Administrative and other workers in office environments may find comfort in knowing that the California workers’ compensation insurance program will provide financial assistance to injured workers. Injuries must be reported to the employer or a supervisor as soon as possible. The next step is to file a benefits claim with the insurance provider, which is a complicated process that can be simplified by an attorney who has experience in this field of the law.