In 2021 there were 132 work-related fatalities in education, according to the National Safety Council. Although this does not seem like much, educators often consider a college campus a safe place of learning and growth.
However, it is important to remember that higher education institutions are also workplaces. Just like any other workplace, accidents can happen on college campuses.
Understanding work-related injuries
Work-related injuries in higher education can occur in various settings, from classrooms and labs to administrative offices and maintenance areas. These injuries can result from a wide range of activities, including:
- Administrative tasks
- Maintenance work
- Assisting other teachers or staff
Common work-related injuries in higher education include slips, trips, falls, strains and exposure to hazardous materials.
Preventing Work-Related Injuries
Staff and students need to keep the campus environment safe. This includes promptly reporting any hazards, such as loose tiles, wet floors or malfunctioning equipment.
If your work involves sitting at a desk or computer for extended periods, ensure your workspace is ergonomically sound.
Institutions should provide proper safety training to staff who may risk exposure to hazardous materials. Knowing how to use safety gear and handle chemicals can prevent accidents.
Wear appropriate footwear for the tasks you will be performing. Non-slip shoes can help prevent falls, especially during wet or snowy weather.
Familiarize yourself with emergency procedures and the location of fire exits and first-aid kits.
Reporting and seeking help
If you witness or experience a work-related injury on campus, report it immediately to the appropriate authorities. Prompt reporting ensures that staff takes action to prevent further incidents.
By following safety guidelines, maintaining a vigilant attitude and staying informed, staff and students can contribute to a safer campus environment.