Most people assume that, if they get injured on the job, they will know it. They think of injuries like construction workers falling from a ladder or warehouse workers being struck by a forklift. These are major events that cause very clear and serious injuries right away, so there shouldn’t be any question about whether or not they got hurt.
These accidents definitely happen, but it’s also important to remember that the work environment that you’re in could be slowly causing physical damage every day that you’re on the job. These hazards may not be as clear or obvious right away, but they could take an even greater toll on your life.
How does this happen?
One example of this could be if you are constantly exposed to asbestos or other harmful particles in the air that you breathe. Workers who may be exposed are supposed to be given proper masks and other types of personal protection equipment. But if you are not given this equipment, or if you are given a mask that doesn’t offer full protection, then every breath you take could be potentially harmful.
Another example is noise-related hearing damage. A high-volume workplace may be unavoidable if there is the consistent use of power tools and other heavy machinery, but workers do need to have the right PPE to protect their hearing. Remember that your hearing often cannot be repaired, so any damage that is caused on the job is likely permanent.
What can you do?
If you do end up facing some serious illness or injury caused by different types of exposure on the job, be sure you know how to seek proper workers’ comp benefits.