Now that a COVID-19 vaccine is here, more retail workers are able to return to their jobs. However, retail work is notorious for being physically demanding. Even if it doesn’t seem like working a cash register or stocking shelves should be taxing, retail employees are frequently injured on the job.
Here are some of the most common injuries to befall retail workers. If you’re injured while on the clock, call a workers’ compensation attorney right away.
Injuries from Falling Objects
Even lightweight items can hurt a person when they fall from tall shelves. Larger, heavier objects can be deadly. Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Alert your employer when you see potential safety hazards, including top-heavy shelves or unsafe worker practices.
Lifting or Overexertion-Related Injuries
Retail jobs often require employees are able to lift a certain amount of weight. Your job might ask you to stock shelves with heavy items, help customers out to their vehicles or receive deliveries. When employees aren’t trained properly or don’t have access to safety equipment, it’s easy to get injured. Strains, sprains and more severe injury like a disc herniation can all occur as a result of lifting-related job duties.
Similarly, overexertion-related injuries can cause lasting damage. Any job that requires excessive physical effort from their employees on a regular basis is likely to eventually cause injury.
Repetitive Stress Injuries
Repetitive stress injuries occur when a person performs work that requires constant repetition of the same motion or movement. For example, operating a cash register for hours on end can strain the muscles in your hands, wrists and forearms. Retail workers can develop carpal tunnel syndrome as a result of their employment.
Slipping, tripping and falling are all possible when you work a crowded retail floor. Products and displays are often arranged around endcaps, sometimes protruding into the aisles. This can cause injuries ranging from bruises and scrapes, to sprains and broken bones. Always be aware of the obstacles in front of you.
Finally, retail employees are vulnerable to injuries caused by machinery. Not all retail workers have to use machinery, let alone heavy machinery—but the ones who do are susceptible to bruises, cuts, crush injuries, broken bones, and more. Avoid the temptation to “zone out” while working with machinery. Follow all the safety precautions and training provided. If you notice a gap in safety training or issues with the machinery, alert your superiors as soon as possible.
If you’ve been injured at your retail job, the experienced attorneys at Nager, Romaine, & Schneiberg Co. L.P.A. can help. Call us today for a consultation.