Every business should aspire to guarantee a safe work environment. It is not an add-on but should be treated as a prerequisite. This is irrespective of the size of business. Training your staff is among the safety procedures that are a must in the workplace This is not just to ensure the safety of employees, but also for that of the equipment and the entire business facility. By adopting these measures, your business avoids injuries to employees and damage caused to machinery and infrastructure. This keeps avoidable expenses at a minimum. Professional workplace safety consultants in Australia can prepare a comprehensive safety manual, plan, and emergency safety plan for you.
The first step towards ensuring safety in the workplace is to understand what exactly poses hazards to your workplace. Understanding this can help you protect employees. In some industries, these hazards may include the use of chemicals, machinery, noise pollution, design flaws, limited visibility, the risk of falling, and other weather-related risks. If the furniture is not ergonomic in design, it may cause health problems to employees, include chronic back pain, etc. If you happen to work with chemicals, there are dangers of explosions or even unintentional poisoning.
Further, there is the issue of mechanical safety which may arise during, before or after the operation of machines in the workplace. Constant noise and visibility hazards can result in loss of ability in both, the nose and the eyes. Falls may result from poor design, lack of proper sign, unsupervised movements, or plain negligence. Last, but not the least, elements of nature like excessive heat, rain, ice, hail, snow also pose risks to your employees, if their job involves working outdoors.
Workplace Safety Policy
If your business doesn’t have a safety policy in place, then it should be expeditiously created by the management or after consultations between the administration and the employees. It is best to include your employees in the process.
Here are specific guidelines that you can share with your employees to spread awareness about workplace safety-
1) Know Your Surroundings
Employees should try to know what particular hazards are there in the job or the workplace. Learning about these potential dangers helps them be aware of potentially hazardous areas. Dangerous situations can be avoided with knowledge about the risks. Employees should know about different parts of machinery, and the associated risks that come with them. Always be alert of machinery.
2) Maintain Correct Posture
If your daily work involves sitting, then keep shoulders in line with the hips. This will help avoid back problems. Don’t stoop. Make sure that the furniture you are using in ergonomically designed. Encourage employees to know where the safety equipment is kept ,so that it is within easy reach when the need arises.
3) Take Breaks Between Work
Often, work-related injuries and indisposition happen when the worker is burned out, and weary, and therefore not alert to what is happening in his/her surroundingss. Even studies show that taking regular breaks mid-job helps employees to remain alert and fresh. It helps in improving concentration levels. This, in turn, boosts your business’ productivity. Encourage your employees to take breaks, and then return to work again.
4) Use Machinery Properly
When using tools, proper precautions should be taken. Shortcuts may cut down the time needed to do something, but they are potentially dangerous. Follow the safety manual that comes with the equipment, and avoid cutting corners.
5) Make Emergency Exits Accessible
This is probably the essential aspect of workplace safety. During an emergency, your employees should be aware of where the emergency exits are located. Such exits should be kept clear, and unhindered. Further, equipment should be able to shut off swiftly during emergencies. Keeping the controls in an easily accessible place is vital.