It’s no secret that facilities like warehouses, factories, foundries, and construction sites are some of the most dangerous workplaces in the world. Workers in these places are using dangerous tools, handling heavy machinery, and putting themselves through backbreaking work every day!
However, these jobs aren’t the only places where danger can lurk; safety is an essential part of every industry in the world. Here are a few important tips that will keep you and your employees safe, whether you work in a construction site or an office building.
Communication is Key
An employer and his or her employees need to have open communication if their workplace is to be a safe one. Employers and managers need to make safety rules, regulations, and procedures perfectly clear, and employees need to be able to ask questions or alert someone if they notice something that’s not up to snuff.
Make sure that your organization has a clear protocol for communicating safety issues — and make sure everyone in your company understands the protocol. You’ll soon discover that simple communication can help you stop safety issues in their tracks!
Always Be Observing
Once every member of your organization understands the safety rules (and if you’ve been communicating properly, everyone should), it’s important that everyone continually watches for hazards around the workplace. A fraying electrical cord, a spill in the breakroom, an exit door that’s sticking shut — these minor issues can lead to major problems, so it’s best you spot them right away!
You might notice that I said “everyone” should be watching for these hazards, instead of those workers who spend the most time in the office space. This is for one simple reason: more eyes means a more thorough search! Sharing the responsibility between everyone in the organization helps create a safer environment overall.
Report Unsafe Conditions
Let’s say you notice something unsafe in your workspace. It’s nothing major, just a small inconvenience like a tripping hazard. Once you notice it, you spread the word among your co-workers and everyone knows to be careful as they walk by. Crisis averted, right?
Not exactly. It’s still very important to report unsafe conditions to your boss or to anyone involved in workplace safety. After all, that “minor” hazard is still there — and if someone is unaware of the danger (or simply forgets about it during their busy day), it could contribute to a major injury. Always be sure to alert someone of any workplace hazards you see.
Keep Exits Clear
One of the most important parts of any workplace is the emergency exit. This is the place where employees will retreat in the event of any dangerous situation, which means is can potentially be a literal life-saver! However, too often exits become blocked by work materials, deliveries, or even worker belongings — and this can be incredibly unsafe.
Make it a priority to keep all exits (both those designated for emergencies and those you use daily) clear of all materials. Don’t leave your bag by the door when you walk into work and don’t let materials pile up by the exit. Keeping this area tidy will make a big difference for everyone in an emergency.
Don’t Be Afraid of Breaks
Many people, be they accountants or machinists, are afraid to take breaks while they’re on the job. They’re worried they’ll look less productive than their co-workers. They’re worried they won’t impress the boss. Most of all, they’re worried that a break could cost them their job.
However, many workers fail to realize that not taking regular breaks will cost them much more than their workplace reputation: it can cost their health and safety! Make sure you keep yourself healthy, awake, and alert on the job by taking breaks whenever necessary. Your work will ultimately improve if you just take a little time to yourself.
Use Your Tools with Care
This may seem like an obvious tip. Why would you use your tools carelessly? Well, the fact is that many workers figure out “shortcuts” or little “tricks” that help them accomplish their work more quickly — but these tricks aren’t always safe. In fact, workers taking “shortcuts” is one of the leading causes of workplace injuries!
Instead of looking for ways to get the job done fast, make sure that you take the time to use your tools carefully and get it done right. This will help you avoid injuries and ultimately make you more productive in the long run.Invest in PPE
PPE, or personal protection equipment, is an essential part of many industries, from doctor’s offices and science labs to auto shops and oil and gas facilities. The gloves, masks, and suits workers wear in these facilities protect them while they work and protect their work from contamination — and that makes it something you can’t afford to cut corners on.
Make sure you invest in appropriate workplace attire and high-quality PPE that suits your industry and your worker’s needs. These safety tools can make all the difference in keeping your workers safe and producing safe products!
How can WSG help?
- Talk to one our safety associates for guidance on developing a policy for appropriate workplace attire.
- Not sure of the correct PPE for the job site or task at hand? WSG can help with a Job Hazard Analysis review. TF 1-866-347-7707