5 Proactive Ways to Prevent Back Injuries

More than a million workers suffer from back injuries each year. These account for one in five injuries in the workplace annually, which can increase insurance premiums. Illinois construction insurance can protect your business from liabilities – but you can protect your employees by training them in injury prevention methods.

Top 5 Ways to Reduce Workplace Back Injuries

Here are some of the top ways you can prevent back injuries in the workplace:

1. Train workers to lift properly

Most back injuries can be prevented with simple lift training. Train employees to remain aware of their surroundings while carrying heavy loads. Here are some more recommendations that you can give:

  • Use carrying or lifting aids such as dollies, pallet jacks, and carts to lift loads.
  • Align your feet before a load, ensuring your feet straddle it. One foot should be a bit in front of the other for balance.
  • Ensure your back is straight and your knees are bent when lifting.
  • Do not lift anything with greasy or wet hands.
  • Do not turn at the waist when lifting. Your entire body should pivot – not just your feet.

2. Maintain proper posture

Most back injuries are the result of physically demanding tasks. But even workers who sit behind a desk are prone to these. Make sure they protect their back by maintaining the proper posture. Here are some tips that you can recommend:

  • Don’t work while slouching. It places strain on the back.
  • Make sure both feet are firmly on the floor while you work. Use a step stool if needed, or adjust your chair so that both knees are at a 90° angle.
  • Make sure you are not looking up at the computer screen while working. Adjust your seat’s height, so you are looking straight ahead.

3. Reduce stress with exercise

Strong back and stomach muscles result in a strong core that can support your back as you work or lift loads. Simple back toning workouts can also improve posture and reduce stress which can be back for your back.

Here are some simple exercises that can give you a good start. The best thing about these is that you don’t need to do painful crunches to complete them, and they don’t require any machines.

4. Modify repetitive tasks

As an employer, you have a duty of care to your employees. This includes ensuring they remain safe from back injuries resulting from repetitive tasks. Here are some tips that can help:

  • If you cannot change lifting jobs, modify them to reduce the force and frequency and change the position slightly to limit lifting.
  • Consider shortening routes for a fleet of delivery trucks
  • Limit the hours that employees are behind the wheel and doing physically demanding tasks.
  • Alternate the time they drive and complete other tasks, so their back gets a break.
  • Hire drivers for shorter shifts.

5. Talk to your employees

You don’t know what they need if you are not out in the field with your employees. Involve them in an ergonomic program by consulting with them. Discuss safety concerns, get their ideas on improving ergonomic safety, and brainstorm ways to improve processes to prevent back injuries.

Your workers are the best source for ideas in this case. Also, consider getting Illinois construction insurance, so you protect your business from liabilities.

Contact SIA Insurance Group for Illinois Construction Insurance

Based in Woodridge, IL, SIA Insurance Group takes a proactive approach to construction insurance. Our 360 Insurance System covers business risks, so you don’t have to pay for them later. Contact us for a consultation today!

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