Safety Management Techniques: Providing Protection for Employees in the Workplace

BusinessManagement

  • Author Dan Snyder
  • Published July 20, 2007
  • Word count 582

Recently, a 23-year old roofer slipped off the roof where he was working, fracturing his leg, dislocating his wrist, breaking his back, and causing permanent nerve damage. This worker, who had never heard of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, was not wearing a safety harness and was using a "slide guard" unapproved by OSHA. Although the jury found this worker minimally responsible for his negligence, the majority of the responsibility went to the employing contractors, resulting in a $10,500,000 judgment granted to the worker.

In every workplace, be it construction site, factory, or office, safety is of utmost importance. Unless rules and regulations are set in place and strictly followed, workers can easily be a danger to themselves and to others. Therefore, offering training for employees in safety is of great importance in preventing accidents and reducing the risk of work-related injury. By providing OSHA safety training and by educating themselves, employers can do much to ensure that their workers are well-protected.

Because knowledge is vital to worker protection, hiring a safety consultant specialist to provide OSHA safety training is often the most productive and cost-effective solution. A certified safety professional is well-educated in local, state, and federal guidelines and is able to apply years of experience in workplace safety consulting to customize a plan that will meet the needs of any individual client. The safety consultant will not only provide assessment of the workplace along with site-specific OSHA safety training but will also offer follow-up inspections to ensure safety procedures are up-to-date and effective.

A certified safety professional will implement a detailed safety process and provide extensive workplace safety consulting for the hiring business; however, employers should be sure workers are actively following basic safety procedures. While the safety consultant will offer comprehensive and in-depth safety management techniques, an employer can, in the meantime, implement a few practical steps to get started. Many accidents and other problems can be avoided with a little forethought. Consider the following:

*Monitor equipment daily to ensure proper functioning.

*Decrease stress levels so employees can stay focused on the tasks at hand.

*Provide clear markings such as color contrasts on steps or uneven floors.

*Encourage medical aid training and know who is qualified.

*Distribute and practice emergency plans such as evacuation procedures.

*Maintain organization to help workers stay focused.

*Brief all new employees on current safety procedures.

*Post warning signs on damaged or wet floors to eliminate slips and falls.

*Follow existing rules exactly so that all rules maintain their value.

*Provide adequate lighting in all areas of the work environment.

*Be visibly involved in the workplace and available to employees.

*Perform frequent inspections and risk assessments of the work environment.

*Set an example in safety management as employers/supervisors set the tone.

*Have workers rotate tasks in repetitive environments to reduce strain injuries.

*Consider ergonomics such as learning the right way to lift heavy objects and ensuring that chairs provide adequate back support.

While these basic safety techniques will help companies in progressing toward a safe environment, it is important to remember that hiring a certified safety professional to provide federal OSHA safety training is the ultimate solution. A safety consultant will assist clients not only with the basics but also with reaching optimal performance goals through workplace safety consulting. This workplace safety consulting and training should be a continual process. A certified safety professional provides the necessary follow-up services as well as education for employers in maintaining safety for themselves and their workers.

Performance Based Safety, LLC (PBS) is a network of occupational health and safety training professionals dedicated to helping companies improve business performance while protecting the lives and livelihoods of employees and contract workers. For more information, please visit Performance Based Safety, LLC or call Dan Snyder at 417-773-3555.

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