Every workplace has risks, but some are far more hazardous than others. Any labor-driven industry, including manufacturing, shipping, or construction, carries a high risk of injury that must be continually combatted. Even just one person failing to follow the rules can result in devastating consequences; as an employer, the responsibility falls on you to minimize risks and prevent serious injury. Employers have a legal obligation to provide safe working conditions to their employees, but workplace safety goes far beyond liability. Your workers entrust you with their lives; reducing workplace hazards ensures that they are kept safe and everyone can perform their job without anxiety.
Have the Right Equipment
Having the right equipment and safety gear helps reduce the risk for injuries. Hard hats and reflective vests are required in forklift areas in order to protect you from any potential harm. There should also be an ample supply of safety goggles, gloves, earplugs and any other safety gear your employees may require on the job. Instructions should be readily available at all times, and it can even be helpful to implement safety checks upon entering the workplace.
Evaluate your property for common workplace hazards, and come up with a prevention plan to reduce exposure to or eliminate threats entirely. In an office environment, poor ergonomic posturing and repetitive movements like typing can lead to back and neck problems. Warehouse and factory workers are at risk of hearing loss from noise and vibrations and injuries from falls. Periodic risk assessments can help ensure that the workplace is continually being improved to promote safety, reduce liability and protect everyone on the premises.
Provide Routine Training
Annual safety training is legally mandated, but it serves a valuable purpose. Routine training helps employees identify risks in the workplace and protect themselves and one another. Unfortunately, some employers fail to diversify the training experience, and employees tend to view it as more of an annoyance than anything else. To make sure that everyone takes away valuable information, learn to make safety training fun. Make attendance more enjoyable by providing refreshments and comfortable seating. Include prizes for those who actively contribute, and make it interactive so people have an opportunity to field questions, offer helpful tips and partake in a valuable conversation. Although safety training is serious, it doesn’t have to be dull and stifling. Let employees enjoy themselves at work, even during mandatory training, and they will take away far more from the experience than they ever could just by watching a video.
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