Office

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Office: Common Hazards

Chemical Agents

Risk of:

  • Health effects such as dermatitis.

Possible causes:

  • Exposure to cleaning chemicals and toners.

Electricity

Risk of:

  • Burns.
  • Electric shock.
  • Death.
  • Fire.

Possible causes:

  • Faulty or poorly maintained equipment.

Equipment

Risk of:

  • Cuts.
  • Electric shock.

Possible causes:

  • Faulty equipment.
  • No or poor maintenance of equipment.
  • User inattention.

Ergonomic Hazards

Risk of:

  • Pains in back, neck or arms.

Possible causes:

  • Poorly set up computer or office workstations.
  • Over reaching or stretching.
  • Repetitive tasks such as data entry.
  • Poor ergonomics of software.

Fire

Risk of:

  • Smoke inhalation.
  • Burns.
  • Death.

Possible causes:

  • Overloaded sockets or extension leads.
  • Faulty equipment.
  • Unmaintained equipment.

Manual Handling

Risk of:

  • Musculoskeletal disorders.

Possible causes:

  • Lifting heavy items such as boxes of photocopy paper.
  • Lack of physical activity.

Noise

Risk of:

  • Fatigue and inefficiency.
  • Impaired concentration.
  • Increased mental and emotional strain.

Possible causes:

  • Exposure to low level noise (ringing phones, equipment generated noise, non-relevant conversations of colleagues in open plan offices).

Slips, Trips and Falls

Risk of:

  • Minor injuries such as cuts to major injuries such as broken bones, concussion and even death.

Possible causes:

  • Uneven surfaces.
  • Worn or torn carpets.
  • Badly placed mats.
  • Loose phone cords or computer cables.
  • Trailing cables.

 

Working at Height

Risk of:

  • Fall resulting in minor injuries such as bruises and cuts to major injuries such as concussion or broken limbs.

Possible causes:

  • Lack of access equipment such as footstools to access material stored at height.

 

Further Information

For further information on related controls click here.

Note: This is not an exhaustive list of hazards and risks.