Painting professionally in a commercial setting, such as for construction projects or building renovations, can be a lucrative career. You may enjoy watching the transformation that takes place as you work on a painting project and see the space take on a new life. However, as with many jobs that have a connection with construction work, you face serious risks to your health and well-being while on the job.
If you work for a company that provides commercial painting services, your employer should take steps to protect you and your co-workers while on the job. If certain measures are not taken, you could find yourself seriously ill or injured as a result of performing your work-related duties.
Risks you face
As a professional, you always want to keep standards high, and those standards include those relating to safety. As a result, you rely on your employer, co-workers and yourself to keep a work area as safe as possible. Some of the hazards you may want to watch out for on any new project include the following:
- Slippery surfaces: Mistakes can happen, and a spilled bucket of paint or even just drips from a roller may not seem like a major issue. However, this spill or puddled drops can create a slippery surface that puts you and other painters at risk of slipping and falling.
- Lack of ventilation: As you know, paint gives off intense toxic fumes, and breathing too much of those fumes could cause dizziness, headaches, nausea and other side effects, many of which could become chronic after prolonged exposure.
- Lack of eye protection: Paint is a chemical, and the paint itself can pose as many dangers as the fumes. If paint is dripped, wiped or flung into someone’s eye, injuries could result.
- Working at height: You may have to work on ladders or scaffolding at different times during the course of your work duties in order to reach all areas that need painting. However, an unsteady ladder or improperly put together scaffold could put you in danger of a serious fall.
Of course, other dangers can present themselves on worksites as well, so it is always prudent to pay attention to your surroundings, use protective equipment, and alert supervisors if you begin to feel ill or if an accident occurs.
What if you suffer harm on the job?
Though you certainly want to be able to go to work each day and do your work well, accidents can happen. If you find yourself suffering illness or injury after a work-related incident, you may have reason to pursue workers’ compensation. Applying for these benefits is not always easy, so working with an experienced New York attorney may be in your best interests.