The UK’s employment rate is comfortingly high at the minute, with around three quarters of all eligible adults in employment of some form. As more people return to labour, the prospect of career and future becomes a key concern for those thinking about their next steps.
There are many jobs that may seem worthy, character-building and even lucrative, but they can also be uniquely dangerous. Before you sign up for one of the following jobs, think about the ways in which you might be exposed to occupational risk…
While firefighting is a noble profession to enter into, it is also an incredibly dangerous one. Somewhat uniquely, though, the dangers inherent to firefighting are well-telegraphed by the requirements of the role. It goes without saying that firefighters will face increased risk of burn injury from exposure to fire, but there is also the possibility of smoke inhalation to contend with – which can cause long-term diseases and conditions in certain edge cases.
There is also a mental health element to consider, where firefighters are often the first response to dangerous situations involving casualties. Post-traumatic stress disorder is a profoundly affecting condition, and an occupational hazard for many in emergency response.
The construction industry is, measure for measure, the most dangerous industry in the UK for workers. According to a recent study, the industry is responsible for the highest percentage of workplace fatalities in the UK, with a 16.34% share. The risks faced by construction workers are wide-ranging, and specific to the sites on which they work.
Many injuries caused in construction are a result of falling from height – something that is especially the case for large-scale construction efforts. Trips, slips and falls are also common as a result of messy or debris-laden working environments.
While there are robust measures and strict legislation in place to protect employees in the construction industry, it remains a possibility for construction businesses to fall short of compliance. This can result in serious injury, and potentially prompt workers to seek legal advice from workplace injury professionals.
By the same token, there are many other forms of trade-related work that present unique and dangerous hazards to those that undertake them. Roofing is a highly skilled role, and one that can be particularly lucrative if undertaken with the right employer – in terms of training, growth and remuneration altogether.
However, roofing requires workers to consistently work at height, handling dangerous power tools in the process. Slips and trips are much more dangerous here, as they can terminate in a precipitous drop. Slips can also result in nail-gun related incidents, which can, in some cases, cause career-ending injury.
The dangers faced by emergency response professionals have already been touched on when it comes to firefighting, but paramedics also face unique occupational hazards relating to the nature of their day-to-day. Risks are higher for injuries inflicted by people, as disoriented patients may become violent. As such, the risk of blood infection is much higher – on top of stress-related disorders and exhaustion.