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ICT

Health and Safety

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Possible dangers and solutions

Within information technology it is important that people have an awareness of the various health and safety issues. Steps should also be taken towards preventing common problems rather than trying to cure them at a later date.

Back problems

Many computer users suffer serious back problems. This is probably due to a poor posture or an awkward position while sitting at a computer.

Solutions

  • A fully adjustable chair should avoid poor posture.
  • Footrests can reduce these problems.
  • Screens should tilt and turn to a position that avoids awkward movements.
user sat on adjustable chair, at an adjustable desk with foot rest and adjustable monitor

Eyestrain

Eyes can become strained after staring at a computer screen for a long time, particularly if working in bad light, in glare or with a flickering screen.

Solutions

  • Screen filters can remove a high percentage of the harmful rays emitted from a computer screen.
  • Use screens that do not flicker.
  • Take regular breaks - do not work for more than one hour without a break.
  • Lighting must be suitable and blinds fitted to windows to reduce glare.

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)

silver and black keyboard with two hands typing

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) is damage to the fingers, wrists and other parts of the body due to repeated movements over a long period of time.

Solution

  • To prevent RSI, make sure your posture is correct, use wrist rests and have a five-minute break from typing every hour.

Ozone irritation

Health experts have suggested that ozone emitted from laser printers [laser printer: pages are printed by fusing the ink to the paper using direct contact and heat ] can lead to breathing problems.

Solution

  • It is recommended that laser printers should be situated at least one metre away from where people are sitting and there should be good ventilation in the area.

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