We all know to be aware of blind spots while we are driving and many of us double check to make sure there is not a car next to us when we are merging into a lane. But did you know that blind spots can also exist in the office, warehouse or factory?
Depending on the layout of your space there may be intersections or hallways that make it difficult to know or be aware of what is around the corner. In settings where heavy machinery and equipment is being used this can be extremely dangerous and lead to accidents or injuries.
So what can you do to ensure the safety of your employees?
To keep your employees safe it is important to provide proper visibility. Some of the ways to increase visibility include proper lighting, signage and warning sounds. One of the most effective ways is the strategic positioning of mirrors throughout your workplace. Mirrors on the road or at intersections help us see potential traffic when there may be a blind spot. Similarly, mirrors in the workplace can help employees see what or who may be coming around the corner and can protect themselves accordingly.
While it is not mandatory, OSHA and insurance companies highly recommend properly placing mirrors in your facility especially in areas that involve heavy machinery operators (such as forklifts) for the safety of the operator and those working around them.
Most facilities have some mirrors in place, but just placing a few mirrors around is not enough. It is important to work with a professional who can inspect your facility, provide a report that identifies problem areas and offer suggestions on ways you can improve.
When it comes to mirror placement and selection there are two main mirrors that are often used. Convex mirrors (for specific angles) and mirrored domes (view of each direction). Both of these mirrors offer one foot of viewing distance for each inch of mirror diameter.
Additional methods to increase visibility include:
- Slogan or signage mirrors which include a custom message, such as a safety reminder or warning about hazards on them
- Lights and reflective surfaces/stripes to illuminate areas such as the darker areas of a warehouse
- Warning sounds to signal the presence of a vehicle or that a vehicle/machine is moving or has been activated
There are many dangers in the workplace and providing increased visibility can help workers to see and be more aware of blind spots that may exist. Working with a professional to inspect your facility and provide the proper recommendations for products is a great first step towards a safer workplace.
Have a Safe Day!