Fort Lauderdale is a stunning beach town just north of Hollywood, Florida, on the southeastern coast. Known for being a popular spring break destination and second home to "snowbirds" who flock to its tropical climate during the cold season, the town is filled with beaches and boating canals.
Greater Fort Lauderdale, within Broward County, has a population of 178,800 as of 2016, according to City-Data.com. The median age in the area is 40 years old, and median household income averages $53,000. Below, we take a look at the most common occupations for residents in Fort Lauderdale, FL, and occupational injuries which occur most often within these occupations.
Hospitality and Food Services
With Fort Lauderdale being such a popular tourist destination, it is easy to see how careers within hospitality and food service top the list as most common industries, with a total of 15% of the city's population working within these sectors. Common injuries in the food services and accommodation industries include:
Slip and fall accidents – These accidents are common in the food service industry due to slippery or wet floors, spills, and objects constructing employees' paths.
Motor vehicle accidents – Delivery drivers and caterers are often involved in motor vehicle accidents when driving to deliver an order and striving to arrive to the catering location on time.
Thermal burns - Cooking vessels, ovens, open flames, deep-fat fryers, and hot beverages can all lead to thermal burns.
Electrical burns – Housekeeping employees who deal with outlets, and kitchen workers who are required to handle electrical equipment, are at a higher risk of receiving an electrical burn.
Cuts and puncture wounds - Knives, meat slicers, can openers, and broken glass are all common causes of injuries in the accommodation and food service industries. It is vital to practice kitchen safety and wear gloves when on the job to minimize contamination and health hazards.
With the retail industry booming in this coastal town, 13% of the population of Fort Lauderdale is employed within the retail sector, with “sales and related occupations” as the second most common Fort Lauderdale based occupation, according to City-Data.com. Check out the most common occupational injuries within sales occupations:
Musculoskeletal disorders – This encompasses all sprains, strains, back pain, and carpal tunnel syndrome. If you are employed in a retail position, your tasks may include stocking shelves, lifting and moving heavy objects, or managing the stock room. All of these tasks can cause extreme tension and pressure on your back and legs.
Stress injuries – It is common for retail roles to require the employee to consistently bend down and reach up to pick up and retrieve various items. Over time, added stress from repetitive motion can lead to bigger problems in the spine, as well as other areas.
According to City-Data.com, 11% of the population in Fort Lauderdale is employed in roles within the construction and extraction industries, making the construction industry the third most common in the city.
While construction and extraction roles continue to rise in popularity as the city expands, there are many serious injuries associated with such roles. Industrial Safety & Hygiene News reported in 2015 that the most common construction site injuries for workers include:
Head injuries – Falling objects, tools, and debris make head injuries common within the construction trade. This is why it is vital to always protect your skull from serious head and brain injuries by wearing a hard hat at all times while on the job.
Burns and scarring – Building sites are notorious places for fires and explosions, and as a result of these accidents, serious burns and scarring are common. Exposed wiring and leaking pipes are a cause for concern, and should be reported to management immediately.
Injuries to the spinal cord – Heavy lifting, falling from a ladder, or falling from a heightened area can cause various injuries to the spinal cord. To protect yourself, practice caution when working at heights, and never stray to areas that are marked off limits.
If you are a resident of Fort Lauderdale, FL, remember to always make safety a priority while you are in your workplace. If you feel as if the safety training you received was not adequate, speak to management regarding your concerns.
If you are experiencing back pain as a result of your occupation, contact a licensed chiropractor right away, and always inform your employer of the pain or injury you are experiencing, along with the perceived cause of pain.