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Workplace Safety: Identifying Health & Safety Hazards

Julie Copeland

Posted by
CEO

avoiding workplace safety hazardsAnother work week is upon us and Arbill wants to help make sure that you continue to keep your employees and visitors safe.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 3,063,400 recordable non-fatal injuries and illnesses in Private sector industry in the USA in 2010.  In addition to their social costs, workplace injuries and illnesses have a major impact on an employer's bottom line. According to The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), it has been estimated that employers pay almost $1 billion per week for direct workers' compensation costs alone.

Our blog this week will focus on how to identify health & safety hazards in the workplace in the hopes that the number of incidents can be reduced thereby increasing your bottom line.

Each company will find different safety hazards depending on your industry however, every business will benefit by identifying health & safety hazards in their workplace.  Here are some tips:

  1. Create a Safety Checklist – Even small business owners who are not in high risk industries need to pay attention to employee safety in the workplace.  Check the workplace safety statistics at bls.gov for your industry and your business.  Are there areas for improvement?  We’ll talk more about creating the Safety Checklist in our next blog.  Once your Safety Checklist is created, conduct Workplace Inspections.
  2. Check for Tripping Hazards – Inspect your business room by room for slipping and tripping hazards. Removing these hazards is simple but will reduce your risk of injury dramatically since slips and trips are one of the main causes of injury in the workplace.
  3. Check Air Quality – Inspect and clean air ducts and limit smoking in the workplace.  Air quality is important as you don’t want your employees breathing contaminated air.
  4. Keep workplace sanitary – The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that each year more than 20 million cases of acute gastroenteritis are caused by noroviruses.  Norovisuses spread quickly mainly by touching surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus and then putting your hand or fingers in your mouth. Keep your workplace sanitary and implement hand-washing rules as well.
  5. Implement general safety policies - Implement general workplace safety policies and educate your employees on general safety, such as lifting, handling dangerous items and using safety supplies and equipment.
  6. Control access to harmful chemicals or tools. If your business deals with hazardous materials, chemicals or equipment, make sure they are properly locked up when not in use. Accidental exposure to chemicals is another leading cause of injury in the workplace. This includes potentially harmful cleaning supplies.

The above tips should help create a healthy work environment while increasing your bottom line as well.

Subscribe to the Arbill Safety BLOG or stay tuned for our next post, which will continue our theme of identifying health & safety hazards in the workplace with information on how to create a Safety Checklist!

Topics: Arbill, Workplace Inspections, workplace safety, Hazardous Materials, healthy work environment

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