Improve Industrial Safety with These 7 Steps
When it comes to workplace safety, certain industries must take extra precautions to keep their workers safe on the job. Many workers in the oil and gas or construction industries come up against hazards that other industries do not, including falls, electrocution or contact with dangerous chemicals.
In order to reduce the chance of workplace accidents, here are seven ways you can make your site safer:
- Don’t Choose Budget Over SafetyUnfortunately, one of the first things to be cut when reducing a budget is safety training or key safety systems. While it may seem as though your business is saving money by removing safety training, it could instead be costing you more over time. Employees who are not sufficiently trained are more susceptible to accidents, which could put them out of work for good and force employers to find replacements. Depending on the employee’s job and skills, replacing them could cost anywhere from 5.8 to 213 percent of the employer’s salary, according to the Center for American Progress. This all said, it’s in everyone’s best interest to resist cutting safety training from the budget.
- Create a Safe Work CultureWhen employers and their employees all see safety as a priority, the workplace will be safer. The problem is many employers fail to take the lead to promote a safe work culture, which can lead to careless attitudes in the workplace. To create a safe work culture, employers should lead by example and celebrate the successes of employees. It’s helpful for employers to recognize when employees are doing a good job and practicing safe work habits. This can keep employees wanting to do better and better, and such positive reinforcement goes a long way toward promoting safety overall.
- Implement Fall Prevention SystemsFall prevention systems are essential in many industries, and the Occupational Safety & Health Administration has fall prevention regulations that all companies must adhere to. In order to remain compliant with OSHA’s standards, it is critical that you find fall prevention equipment that fits your application. If you need customizable fall protection, ErectaStep offers stairs, platforms and gates that can all be customized and even repurposed to meet the needs of any application and reduce the risk of fall.
- Hire the Right ContractorsA business that hires independent contractors must take care to ensure that these workers are practicing safety in the workplace, just like their own full-time employees. While independent contractors operate under their own name, your partnership with them can also affect your company’s reputation. They are not your employees and are not required to have the same core values as your company, but the contractors you hire should have a good reputation in their line of work, and it helps to see eye to eye on the importance of safety. The Federal Trade Commission has some key tips for consumers when it comes to hiring contractors that business owners could find useful.
- Perform Preventative MaintenanceConducting regular preventative maintenance on equipment can significantly reduce the chance of injuries in many industries. Inspection and maintenance of your equipment should be scheduled regularly so that your equipment is not only safe to use, but its lifespan is also extended. Regular preventative maintenance helps you identify potential hazards before they become a problem, and it will keep your workers safe from easily preventable accidents on the job.
- Encourage CommunicationMany workplace accidents occur because employees fail to speak up or report potential problems. This may be due to a work culture that does not encourage employees to communicate effectively with one another. You can increase communication in the workplace by holding regular meetings that give employees the chance to speak their mind and make improvements within the business. Encouraging employees to communicate about potential problems can help make the workplace safer by reducing potential hazards.
- Keep the Workplace Clean
It may seem obvious, but many places have cluttered worksites that can spell disaster for companies — especially those in dangerous industries like manufacturing or construction. Reduce the risk of falls and trips by making sure your employees see the importance of keeping their work areas clean and free of debris. By emphasizing that it is for their own safety, employees may be more willing to keep their areas mess-free.
Improving Safety Starts with You
Whether you are a business owner or employee, everyone needs to do his or her part to promote a safe place to work. Employers hold much of this responsibility, and there are many ways in which they can improve safety. Industries that have increased risk of workplace accidents must be extra diligent about potential workplace hazards and implement key safety measures to keep their workers happy, healthy and productive.