Computer Workstations

The main injuries associated with workstations occur after working with them for long periods.  They are:

  • upper limb disorders (ULDs) – these include repetitive strain injury and usually occur after using a keyboard or mouse
  • back injuries from sitting with an awkward posture
  • eye strain from looking at the screen

Your employer has a duty to prevent these injuries ocurring to their staff.  The following simple practical steps should be taken by all staff who operate workstations:

  • adopt the right posture when working at their computer workstations – for example, not holding their wrists at an acute angle.
  • take frequent short breaks if they’re using a keyboard for a long time.
  • are aware of the early symptoms of ULDs – such as tingling in the fingers after keyboard use – and report their symptoms to you.
  • use an adjustable chair that’s set up properly for them.
  • know how to set up an adjustable chair to meet their needs.
  • position the screen properly – so that there’s no glare or reflection, it’s at eye height, and it’s neither too far away nor too near.
  • wear glasses or lenses if they need to see the screen clearly – they should wear them all the time when they’re using the screen.
  • have their eyes tested regularly – in some countries, including the UK and Ireland, an organisation must pay for this if they have to use screens for most of their work .