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Retail Workers Experienced a Combined Injury and Illness Rate Higher Than Those in the Construction Industry

The retail industry comes with its own set of risks, and like any other industry, the possibility of accidents, injuries and illnesses are part of the job. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, in 2016, a combined injury and illness rate was higher for retail workers than construction workers.

Most of the injuries sustained were a result of employees moving and stocking products from delivery trucks to storage areas and onto shelves in the store. Musculoskeletal disorders were the most common types of injuries while slips, trips and falls were also reported. 

What Can Be Done to Prevent These Injuries?

The rise of injuries and illnesses in the retail industry brings the question of what can be done to increase the safety measures put in place by the company.  It is up to store management to make the safety of its employees and customers a top priority.

It is recommended that employers hold annual training sessions for all employees that emphasize the prevention of slip, trip and fall accidents, how to safely use ladders, manual material handling, proper housekeeping techniques, and parking lot cart-collection. 

Handle with Care

Handling merchandise and other materials is often the leading cause of retail injuries. It is important that employees be given proper equipment and be trained to lift properly to prevent these injuries. One way to reduce the chance of injuries is to minimize how many times a worker touches a product.

Equipment Design

Focusing on ergonomics can also help reduce injuries by ensuring that equipment is designed properly. An example involves cashiers who repeatedly engage in the same motion during work. If the checkout area can be made as efficient as possible, this can help prevent injuries. One of the solutions was the installation of Lazy Susan’s for bagging, which resulted in customers handling bags instead of the employees.  “Big-box” retailers such as Walmart have done this.

Reducing Slips and Falls

Slips and falls are another common accident in the retail industry. These can be from liquid or powder spills, objects being left in walkways, employees wearing inappropriate footwear, shoppers or employees being distracted. Add the elements of weather-related issues from moisture or rain and the risk of a slip and fall accident goes way up.

Employers need to be proactive including reporting accidents as they happen, identify hazards as they are noticed, making sure the flooring is safe, making sure that the floor is kept clean from all liquid or other substances and ensuring that the proper matting is available for both indoors and outdoors.

If you have suffered injuries as a result of a business or property owner’s negligence, you have the right to pursue financial compensation. Our firm represents injured clients who not only seek financial compensation but more importantly, justice.  The practice of personal injury law is our calling. We are a firm of high-profile, nationally recognized legal advocates who work for you, our client, never big business. Spencer Aronfeld is a Board Certified Trial Lawyer and our firm, Aronfeld Trial Lawyers has successfully represented people and their families in premises liability claims across the country since 1991.   Call us today for a free initial consultation 1-866-597-4529 or email [email protected] and speak with a Miami premises liability lawyer about your potential claim. Our attorneys and support staff are well versed in premises liability law and are available to speak with you 24-hours a day, 7-days a week.