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Dangerous lighting issues in the workplace

Improper lighting is a huge risk in the workplace. It can lead to many workplace accidents and injuries, including slip-and-fall accidents. For example, a stairwell always needs to be well-lit so that workers don’t trip, especially if the stairs are not perfectly even or are worn out from years of use.

So, what constitutes improper lighting? Below are a few examples:

  • Not enough light. Lighting can be expensive. Some employers try to get by with the bare minimum and there’s just not enough to see properly.
  • Lights that aren’t distributed well. Remember, it’s not just the amount of light that matters. The lights need to be spread out properly to reach all parts of the workplace evenly.
  • Excess glare. This could be based on the positions of the lights and the materials used in the workplace, and it can be blinding.
  • Flickering lights. Connections may be bad, which can be a fire hazard. Even if the flickering lights are technically “safe,” though, they can still lead to misjudgments, headaches, eye strain and reduced visibility overall.

Employers should really think of lighting as a safety feature, not just something that is functionally required. They should ask themselves how improved lighting can keep workers safe, preventing injuries and accidents. With this type of safety-first company culture, production increases and workers get the conditions they deserve.

When this doesn’t happen and employees are hurt as a result, they must know all of their legal options. Ramifications vary depending on the severity of the injury, but they could include things like lost wages and high medical bills.

Source: HSI Magazine, “The Hazards of Poor Lighting In The Workplace,” Cynthia L Roth, accessed Dec. 15, 2017

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