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Why is safety in the workplace so important?

© law_keven (Flickr) 365 Days – Day 318 – Moi – CSCS Test – Wednesday November 14th 2007.
© law_keven (Flickr)
Implementing safety programmes
Identifying the dangers
Having a good safety programme at work reduces the potential risk for accidents. This minimises the number of injuries or even deaths. Many working environments can be potentially dangerous places since they have machinery, equipment or materials that be hazardous to health if not properly handled.

When new employees begins working, they should be fully trained on any equipment that they will be expected to use. Signs must also be displayed close to each machine and these should clearly clearly state the hazards associated to these machines.

Since there are many potential hazards at work, these should be identified by systems such as hazard analysis reports. These identify the possible dangers from equipment, materials, even noise.

Even the most minor accidents must be reported. This can make employees aware of potential hazards and could help in preventing further accidents.
Preventative measures
When an equipment is being cleaned, an area around that piece of equipment should be cordoned off, particularly if hazardous chemicals are being used.
The cleaning operator should be fully trained about the cleaning procedures and wear the required safety equipment including goggles, face masks and gloves, if required.
Safety signs such as "cleaning in progress" or "wet floor" signs should be clearly displayed to prevent slips and falls.

Fire training
Training should be conducted on a regular basis to ensure that all workers know how to prevent fires from occurring. Information about safety equipment should be distributed beforehand, explaining how to safely evacuate the building in the event of a fire.
All fire fighting equipment should be tested by law on an annual basis. Fire safety signs should be clearly displayed, showing fire exits and routes to be taken. Workers should be fully briefed on assembly points.

The health and safety of all employees is the responsibility of the managing company. It is the duty of all workers to comply with the rules and regulations set down by law. Reporting any equipment malfunctions before they become a hazard will also ensure safety within the workplace.

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