They say familiarity can breed contempt, but when it comes to working, familiarity can breed carelessness. A lack of variety can make any job boring, and that can increase the risk of injury.
Think about the first time you learned a new skill at work. You focused your attention on the task to make sure you got it right. Now you can do the same task in your sleep and do not pay as much attention. You’re barely conscious of what you’re doing.
Experience can never eliminate all workplace hazards
When you get used to your environment, you do not pay as much attention to the hazards you did when it was all new to you. The same goes for other workers around you. People can soon become blasé about things, which increases the chance of an accident for everyone.
Here are a few examples of how familiarity can lead to a lack of care:
- You work as a chef: You no longer look at what you are doing when chopping food. One day you are busy talking while cutting and cut your hand so deeply you damage the tendons between your thumb and forefinger.
- You work as a driver: When you first started, you walked around your vehicle checking the tires before driving off. After months of driving the same vehicle, you arrive in the morning, put the key in the ignition and head straight off. One day you head off not noticing the tire is damaged and suffer a blowout while going down the highway at speed, causing you to crash.
- You work in high places: After years of doing the same job, someone asks you to pop back up to do a quick task. You are no longer as cautious of heights as you once were and cannot be bothered with the hassle of putting your harness on for a five-minute job. You slip and fall.
If you suffer an injury at work, you will need to claim workers’ compensation benefits. It is a no-fault insurance, so you can still do so even when you know you should have been more careful.