Preventing employee falls at work and at home during a pandemic
Slips, trips and falls account for a majority of injuries in the workplace, especially in construction and manufacturing industries. For years, Washington employers have worked to prevent falls through planning, training and tailored environments for employees. This year, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, work environments have been completely redesigned – including how we prevent falls on the job.
All employers strive to provide the necessary equipment and training specific to job roles to prevent falls. But during this unprecedented time, what else can employers do? Our team at MultiCare Occupational Medicine shares their tried and true steps for employers to integrate into their 2021 fall prevention plans.
Include training related to mask fitting.
An ill-fitting mask can block vision or be a distraction while working, increasing risk of slips, trips and falls. Talk with your teams about how you can help provide a comfortable mask that covers the employee’s face from the bridge of their nose to underneath their chin.
Increase worksite signage.
As we adapt to social distancing while working and limited people gathering at job sites, there may be fewer verbal reminders of safety protocols between employees. Consider fall prevention information reminders near ladder storage, lifts, and outdoor areas that may get wet from weather.
Don’t forget physical exams!
Staying up to date on employee vision, hearing and general health screening is essential to preventing injuries. MultiCare Occupational Medicine can provide comprehensive physical exams and our providers are experts in workforce care.
Look out for new cords around the office.
More people are working remotely or are coming and going between work sites. Designate a place for each person to plug in when they are at work to avoid tripping hazards.
Keep in contact with employees working at home.
A typical home doesn’t have the safety standards you have at the office. Employees may be at risk of injury from tripping over clutter, slipping on spills or falling down stairs. Include aspects from home in your training and communicate with all employees about proper footwear, weather-related hazards and creating a safe workspace while working at home.
Needless to say, workers and business owners have a lot of new work policies and procedures that need to taken seriously. MultiCare Occupational Medicine is here to support Washington businesses and their teams. Our clients and patients miss fewer days of work and can trust that health is the top priority at all times.
Contact MultiCare Occupational Medicine
Inland Northwest: 833-602-8027
About the Author
MultiCare Health System
MultiCare is a not-for-profit health care organization with more than 20,000 team members, including employees, providers and volunteers.