Many New York office workers do not realize that workers’ compensation does not just provide protections for people who work in dangerous occupations. Employers in any industry must carry workers’ compensation insurance to cover the costs associated with workplace injuries, including those that occur in office environments.
These jobs may not have as many safety risks as jobs in the industrial, law enforcement, health care and electrical industries, but office workplace accidents are actually very common. Here is a brief overview of factors that may lead to injuries.
Repetitive use injuries
Many office workers must repeatedly perform the same movements to complete their duties. Over time, employees can develop injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome that may result in long-lasting difficulty, discomfort and disability.
When workers trip and fall over walkway obstructions, slippery surfaces and work equipment, they are at risk of receiving muscle strains, broken bones and concussions. Falls can also occur when there are buckled carpets, uneven surfaces, broken or damaged stairs, missing handrails and poor lighting.
When an object falls off a shelf or a worker drops something from a higher level, it can cause minor, severe or even fatal injuries. An item might also fall on someone who bumps into its base, or an employee may collide with another employee who is carrying a heavy object.
People who work in offices often stare at computer screens for long periods of time, which may cause eye strain. There may be unsafe elements in the air that cause sick building syndrome. A workstation that is not ergonomically correct can cause chronic spinal pain. Employers have a responsibility to eliminate these hazards.
Some office injuries are hard to prove because they can take years to develop. If you have some injuries that you believe are the result of you working in an office environment, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits depending on the circumstances surrounding your situation. You should speak to an attorney for guidance.