Workplace accidents seem like they come out of nowhere. They’re sudden, chaotic and confusing. It’s hard to sort it all out after the fact, let alone as it happens.
This can be deceptive. It makes you think the incident was purely an accident, something you could not have avoided. The reality is that you can absolutely avoid most workplace accidents, and many of them simply start with a dangerous mindset. Four examples include:
Workers do the same task, day in and day out. Even when that task poses serious health risks, they grow complacent. They start looking at other things while working. They begin daydreaming and working on “autopilot.” They stop taking safety seriously because they think they have enough experience not to get hurt.
As soon as they become complacent, that’s when they cause an accident that can injure themselves or others.
Supervisors keep pushing workers to work faster and faster. Any time they reach a quota, it gets increased. They’re never fast enough, and they always get threatened with termination if they do not pick up the pace.
Modern companies really do focus on production. The more they can accomplish, the more they can earn, and the dollar is always king. Unfortunately, rushing workers make mistakes. They take shortcuts. They ignore safety procedures. All of this leads to accidents and injuries.
Workers put in long, hard hours. People joke about office workers falling asleep on their desks, but what if that worker runs heavy machinery? What if he or she drives a semitruck? What if the worker is responsible for the safety of others?
Suddenly, falling asleep on the job seems a bit more dire. Tired workers make mistakes, just like workers who keep rushing. Any little error can put someone else in danger or set off a chain reaction that injures many people.
Workers get frustrated by many things. Some come into work that way, annoyed with things in their personal lives. Others struggle to get along with their coworkers. Still others get frustrated when a job does not go as smoothly as they hoped.
This can lead to workplace accidents because a frustrated worker may make rash decisions or act aggressively, even when it puts others in danger. The worker is fed up and not thinking clearly, and that is not a good combination for anyone.
Accidents and injuries
These four mindsets often put workers in the hospital. In some cases, other workers bear the responsibility. In other cases, supervisors bear that responsibility for creating a toxic work atmosphere and a dangerous company culture. Either way, those who get hurt need to make sure they understand their rights.