These days, plumbers are in a lot of demand — but working as a plumber can be hazardous to your health.

One of the best ways to stay safe and avoid a workplace accident is to understand the most common risks you face. For plumbers, here are the biggest risks on the job:

1. Slips and falls

Slips and falls are more common among plumbers than most people realize. Plumbers in new construction and remodels alike sometimes end up working on ladders at high heights or in areas where the ground underneath is slick with water or refuse. A slip-and-fall accident can leave a plumber with a head injury, a broken back, broken hip or other significantly limiting injuries.

2. Suffocation

Plumbers often work in confined spaces, including in deep trenches, inside storage tanks, in industrial boilers and more. Unfortunately, that can lead to suffocation deaths very easily. Sometimes, there’s a trench collapse — while other times, a toxic gas creeps in.

3. Eye injuries

Safety glasses can reduce your chance of eye damage — but not entirely. It only takes one forgetful swipe with your finger to end up with a serious eye infection. Sometimes, plumbers also end up with eye injuries when pipes burst or some piece of equipment malfunctions.

4. Hearing damage

Would you imagine that 48% of plumbers suffer from hearing loss? All those clanging, banging pipes take their toll — and so does the noise from the grinders and other machinery they use.

5. Heat and cold injuries

Depending on where you are working, plumbing work can expose you to extreme temperatures — with little time for your body to adjust. It’s easy to end up with heat stroke or hypothermia alike.

Naturally, these aren’t the only workplace injuries and accidents that plumbers face. If you’ve been injured, you may have more than one option for financial recovery — so make sure that you understand all of your legal options before you settle any claim.