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Reducing ergonomic injuries in warehouses with new wearable tech

Warehouse owners in New Jersey should be aware that 35% of all injuries that arise in warehouses are ergonomic injuries. It can be difficult to instruct employees on how to avoid such injuries. Classroom training can only go so far, and much of the material could be forgotten after a single week. Applying a standard indiscriminately can fail to take an employee's individual movements into account.

This is where new technology can come in handy. Soter Analytics, an ergonomics tech company, has developed a wearable device called SoterSpine that can monitor every shift in an employee's position and determine if the employee is about to make a hazardous movement. If such a movement is imminent, the tech will beep and vibrate.

Employees attach this device to the back of their shirts. At the end of the day, they can log in to the app and see every movement they made broken down. The device can provide tips for improvement and measure the intensity as well as the difficulty of the work the employee engaged in.

The new tech allows for an individualized approach to workplace safety. It's not meant to be used all the time but only for short (10 to 18 days) training programs. In fact, it fits in well with the larger trend toward microlearning.

Those who suffer ergonomic injuries can file for workers' compensation benefits, but they would do well to know what sort of opposition they might face. Since some employers try to deny payments, a worker may want a lawyer to assist them with filing and, if necessary, mounting an appeal. A lawyer could also discuss with them the possibility of settling. In New Jersey, one can do so even before achieving maximum medical improvement.

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