Take this quick test of knowledge:
What type of injury causes almost HALF of all injuries in which workers need to take time off work in Ontario?
OK, so what did you think?…
Motor accidents (including forklifts, ATVs, pickup trucks, etc.)?
Burns from occupational fire hazards?
Falls from heights – like in construction?
Wrong, on all accounts…
The single greatest number of work-related injuries that require time off are, in fact, musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).
The Ontario government is starting a Safe At Work Ontario blitz next month to target workplaces in the construction, healthcare, industrial and mining sectors.
Provincial inspectors will concentrate on tasks that require workers to exert force in lifting, pushing or carrying items and tasks that put workers in awkward postures or are repetitive.
This initiative is part of the province’s program launched in June 2008, an effort to lessen the "strain" (pun intended) on the health care system. "Keeping workers safe means increased productivity for Ontario’s economy," the government press release adds.
Do you have any MSD nightmare stories you want to share? How about advice to avoid repetitive strain injuries at work?