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Work Place Safety - Steps to Avoid Work Place Injuries
By Randy Sieberg, CIC, ARM, CRM

Work place accidents occur. It’s a fact. From very minor incidents such as small cuts and bruises to very serious accidents that may result in death. However many accidents that take place can be avoided. After all it’s everybody’s job to keep the work place safe.

Work place injuries come along with a cost. From an injured workers view point there’s the physical injury and recovery to deal with along with the lost wages and re-entry into the work place. From the employers view point the associated cost develops into dollars and cents when his experience modification factor takes a hit due to a work comp claim not to mention the lost productivity of having an injured worker off from work.

Of course the type of work you perform will have a great impact on the type and severity of the injuries to which you or your employees may be exposed. Heavy manufacturing operations and construction will have a much higher incident of severe injuries compared to those working in an office environment.

Here’s a few things to keep in mind about work place safety;

  • A safe work environment is everybody’s job – As an employee keep your eyes open and be aware of your immediate surroundings. If you see an unsafe situation, let your supervisor know as soon as possible. As an employer a safe work environment is paramount. Create and use safety committee’s made up of your on line employees. Perform work place safety inspections and have safety procedures outlined for all employees.
  • Always seek proper training – Know how to operate the machinery you may be responsible for, whether a piece of factory equipment, an excavation machine or truck, know the proper operating techniques. No short cuts! If you don’t like what you see bring it to your supervisors attention.
  • Wear the correct safety clothing – Steel toe shoes, or other safety footwear, high visibility vests, hand protection, proper safety eye protection and head protection such as hard hats.
  • Gaurding and fall protection - Take advantage of all guarding and fall protection that is available. As an employee never circumvent installed machine guards for ease of operation or fail to use the proper fall protection and correct ladder safety techniques.
  • Safety guides and rules - Always follow work place safety guides and rules – Throughout the years safety guides and rules have been established for different industries by OSHA. Many of the guides have been put in place as a response to corrected unsafe work techniques. As an employee you need to follow your employers safety procedures.

Keep in mind it’s everybody’s job to keep the work place accident free, employers and employees alike. If you see an unsafe condition, get it fixed! Do not leave an unsafe condition uncorrected because it may be the next person who suffers a serious injury.

This article is brought to you by WorkCompConsultants.com, an independent workers compensation consulting firm dedicated to helping employers prevent and resolve work comp issues.