Some workplace dangers are obvious, like scaling a tall building to wash windows or repairing a broken electrical line. Other hazards are not so easy to detect, which makes them even more dangerous to an unsuspecting worker. Here are three of the top job hazards that lie hidden in plain sight:
Exposure to loud noises can cause significant hearing loss over time. Noises that remain 70 decibels or below are generally considered safe, but any noise that exceeds 85 decibels can create hearing loss if you are exposed to it for a long period of time. For reference, the following noises are roughly 85 decibels:
- A blender
- A crowded lobby
- A construction site
- Heavy traffic
Some job locations, such as construction sites, present constant but known hearing hazards. Workers in these occupations generally wear hearing protection when they are around noisy equipment.
This is not the case in all occupations. We’ve all been at a noisy bar or restaurant where you practically have to shout to be heard. Working a long shift in such an environment can pose serious risks to your hearing health. The same holds true for working in a kitchen, hotel lobby or other environment where the ambient noise is at a constant high level.
The simplest activity of all (or lack of activity) can even prove dangerous when performed for long periods of time. Sedentary jobs come with a wide range of health hazards, from heart disease to cancer. A slight ergonomic imbalance such as an uncomfortable chair or misaligned keyboard can result in severe and disabling repetitive stress injuries over time.
When tempers flare in the workplace, workers can suffer injuries from assaults and other forms of violence. Some occupations such as police officers and health care workers are at higher risk of workplace violence. Anyone who works in a public-facing job faces risks from angry customers and people with criminal intent.
Whatever the source of your workplace injury, you deserve compensation if you were injured on the job. Whether you suffered an accident injury or your condition developed over a long period of time, financial compensation can help you overcome the hardships you face.