A workplace is a place that is intended to be a safe area for everyone to work and congregate in, but rarely is it possible to make sure that any workspace is 100% free from accident, as is the nature of the unpredictable. While it may be hard to outright prevent injuries in the workplace, there are plenty of practical safety tips to help mitigate anything that could go wrong.
The benefits of making the workplace a safe zone for yourself, coworkers, employees, customers, or anyone who visits is that it creates an area free of harm and it encourages people to be responsible towards themselves and one another.
Here are some very practical safety tips to keep injuries at a minimum in any workplace
Provide Adequate Safety Training
Firstly, you need to make sure that everyone is properly trained. Even for those that are just employees, it’s a good idea to ensure that fellow employees are up to code on all the safety regulations and practices. A tough thing for many is that safety rules change from place to place, so new employees need training and existing ones need updated training, from Virginia to Alabama, each state has different requirements. This personal injury law firm Richmond shows how crucial training may be, especially when employees don’t know the rules or regulations of their state for workplaces. Keep everyone up to snuff with the right training.
Make Safety Equipment and First Aid Readily Available
Just like the proper training, employees and employers need access to the right equipment and first aid. Every workplace should have first aid kits with bandaids, wraps, etc. for common injuries, but it gets more complex the more variables are in a workplace. Anywhere with potentially harmful fluids needs an eyewash station, some places need harnesses for working with heights, and gloves, helmets, and protective glasses too. Make sure that employees have this gear or make sure employers are providing it.
Encourage Safe Practices Amongst Employees
As an ongoing effort, make sure people are actually implementing the lessons they’ve learned about safe working habits and practices in the workplace at all times. For employees, it is really crucial that everyone is on the same page because one slacking employee can set off a chain reaction of incompetence that can end up getting someone else hurt inadvertently. Keep people held responsible, and everyone can work safely together.
Use Ergonomic Office Equipment
Not even the white-collar working world of the office is safe from personal injuries and accidents. A major culprit for injuries in an office is less apparent than falling boxes, sparks, or major problems, it is long-term chronic pain from improper office equipment. Keyboards, mice, chairs, and desks can cause damaging problems for people in the long run and this means they are susceptible to injuries in small ways that build up. Providing ergonomic office equipment will greatly reduce issues with joints or muscles, and stand up desks and more flexible office options can help reduce heart disease concerns as well.
Clean Workspaces Regularly
Dirty workspaces can cause injuries in many different ways. Slips and falls are very common when spills are not cleaned up, and even sticky messes can cause trips. Likewise, dirt and dust can harm lungs and nostrils, while unclean areas full of mess are a tripping hazard too. Making sure that the workplace is cleaned on a regular basis instill useful habits for employees (and employers) and keeps everyone held accountable. No one wants to show up to work in a pigsty of a workplace, so make it a responsibility, and even create a cleaning checklist.
Administer Safety Duties to a Capable Individual
Most workplaces are required to have a safety rep who does the inspections and checks on the safety training of employees, but even if your workplace doesn’t have one, it could be a good idea to appoint someone responsible to do this job. Employers can do this by choosing someone who is qualified, and employees should have input on a vote-by-committee basis too. Rotating the safety duties also gives everyone a fair shake so there isn’t a defacto ruling by one person and keeps it fresh with new people.
Creating the ideal workplace should start with one fundamental value: safety. It might be easy to say productivity or performance, but safety is a benchmark we can all get behind to help us achieve the end goal of a fully-functioning work area. So, focus on these practical safety tips.