When the COVID-19 pandemic first hit, many non-essential businesses were forced to cease operations. This affected workers in many sectors, including manufacturing.
As we approach a sense of normalcy and work starts up again, manufacturing workers and their employers may find that months of working limited hours or not working at all may have taken their toll.
Because of their reduced physical activity while in lockdown, employees may have experienced the following:
- Weight gain
- Reduced muscle strength
- Less endurance
- Limited range of motion
- Increased body fatigue
When you return to work, it may be physically as well as mentally challenging to pick up exactly where you left off. We’ve provided information that may be helpful as you prepare for a full day’s work in the manufacturing industry.
Top Tips for Manufacturing Employees Returning to Work
Resuming work, especially in manufacturing, can increase the risk of sustaining injuries and developing musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). To help prevent this, consider these tips on how you may return to work safely:
- Reacquaint yourself with the standard operating procedures – This can help reduce mistakes and having to correct them, thus improving product quality.
- Cut down on unnecessary activity – Rearrange your work area so that you can accomplish your tasks more efficiently. Consider reducing the need for awkward bending or reaching to retrieve work supplies, tools, and products.
- Make an effort to increase your overall fitness and well-being – Improving your health and fitness will make it easier for you to get back to your work routine.
- Know your limits – Allow yourself time to get used to working a regular schedule again. Take breaks when necessary, and don’t take on more tasks or hours than you can physically handle.
- Be sure to communicate any physical discomfort – Reporting any physical discomforts you may be experiencing can help supervisors address and mitigate issues that may lead to MSD.
CDC Guidelines for Employees Returning to Work
As employees return to work from the pandemic lockdown, it is important to stay safe. Social distancing is still the best way to protect each other from COVID-19 infection.
As you return to work, it is highly recommended to continue to observe the following CDC Guidelines:
- Wear a protective mask.
- Wash your hands often, or use hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol.
- Minimize contact with others whenever possible.
- Keep a minimum of six feet of distance away from others.
How to Stay Safe at Work
OSHA requires employers to provide a workplace that is “free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees.” This provision includes keeping employees safe from being infected by COVID-19. According to a CNN article, What Employees Need to Know About Returning to Work, employers are taking the following measures to ensure that their employees stay safe from infection at work:
- Requiring employees to wear masks or other personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Checking employees’ body temperature.
- Sending employees home who may be sick.
- Requiring a doctor’s note before returning back to work.
Contact a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Help
If you were injured at work in South Carolina, whether it was before, during, or after the pandemic, contact Jebaily Law Firm for a free consultation. We have over 50 years of experience pursuing the workers’ compensation benefits that our clients need.
Our workers’ compensation attorney is ready to listen to your story and discuss your rights and legal options. Contact us today.