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Do you know the 5 types of workplace hazards?

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Going to work almost every day is how you and many other South Carolina residents earn a living. While you may enjoy your job, you could face risks to your health and safety without fully realizing it. Unfortunately, many people do not understand the health hazards associated with their jobs until it is too late.

Even if you do not consider your job especially dangerous, that fact does not mean that you are immune to suffering harm resulting from your work. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has five categories of workplace hazards, and many of those hazards could apply to a wide range of jobs.

Types of work-related hazards

Again, you may not consider your job risky, but while reading over the following categories of work hazards and their examples, you may recognize some of the risks as they apply to your work environment:

  • Chemical hazards: Working around chemicals could leave you exposed to dangerous materials, including pesticides, flammable liquids, silica dust and acids.
  • Ergonomic hazards: You could suffer injuries from repetitive motions or uncomfortable positions you must put your body in during the course of your work-related duties, which constitute ergonomic hazards.
  • Safety hazards: These hazards may first come to mind when thinking about workplace dangers, and they include blocked walkways, falling from heights, frayed electrical cords, spills, and getting caught or hit by machinery.
  • Physical hazards: Whether or not you come in direct contact with a physical hazard, you could still suffer ill effects. You may experience illness or injury due to exposure to extreme temperatures, loud noises, radiation or the elements.
  • Biological hazards: If you work around living organisms, including people or animals, you could face biological hazards. These hazards may include fungi, animal waste, blood, viruses and mold.

More than likely, you have come across at least one of these categories in your course of work. While you may not have suffered any negative effects yet, you could develop illnesses or injuries over time or possibly end up involved in a serious accident.

Workers' compensation

If you do end up sick or injured due to a work-related hazard, you may have reason to pursue workers' compensation. This type of compensation could help you cover medical expenses associated with the illness or injury and wages lost while you spend time away from work recovering. Because pursuing workers' comp can prove complicated, you may benefit from enlisting the help of a legal professional.

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