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What is America’s most common workplace injury?

If you work in California’ entertainment, mining, automotive or construction industries, among a multitude of others, you run the risk of suffering what the California Health Care Foundation calls the most common work-related injury in the nation: hearing loss. Costing the nation an estimated $242 million every year in workers’ compensation costs, hearing loss is a highly pervasive problem, but critics have differing opinions about what to do to address the growing issue moving forward.

Some believe additional measures must be taken to enhance your safety and that of your coworkers while at work. The U.S. Department of Labor, for example, is seeking ideas for new technological innovations that would minimize noise exposure for you and your colleagues in the workplace. Others argue that the problem is not so much a lack of protective gear and technology in the marketplace, but rather, that companies and employees do not always rely on them and take necessary measures to stay protected on the job.

Also contributing to the problem is the fact that, surprisingly, you are most likely to experience hearing loss and associated problems if you work in an environment where the noise level is moderate, as opposed to severe. This may be due to the fact that, in work environments where the noise level is unquestionably dangerous, employers and employees alike are apt to understand the risks and don proper protective equipment without question. In environments where the threat is less obvious, you or your employer may be less likely to adhere to or enforce safety protocols.

This information about workplace hearing loss is informative, but please do not consider it a replacement for legal advice.

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