How To Avoid Common Workplace Hazards
Every job, whether in an office or on a construction site, has its risks. A recent UK Health and safety report showed approximately 1.7 million people have suffered a work-related illness. While it is advisable for your workforce to remain attentive and cautious, employers and safety managers bear the primary duty of mitigating these hazards. The specific methods will depend on the industry. Here are four common workplace hazards and the best ways to avoid them.
Shocks from malfunctioning electronics and live wires can occur unexpectedly, which can be lethal. The urgency and severity underpin the importance of implementing suitable preventative measures in the workplace. Maintain your electrical installations by replacing or repairing damaged wires and appliances. It is also recommended to have your electrical appliances tested and recertified per manufacturer recommendations and local regulations. It is a common practice to see many extension cables bundled together. However, this is risky and can result in shorts and electrical shocks. Therefore, always check that all your electrical equipment is operational and plugged into appropriate and functional outlets.
Toxic chemicals and fumes
Your employees can become ill when they are exposed to toxic substances. So it is important to be aware of any potentially hazardous compounds in the workplace and provide the appropriate clothing and sufficient ventilation. It would also be best to have a suitable chemical mixing tank if you work with highly corrosive liquid materials. It is also worth noting that some adverse effects of poisonous substances are cumulative, so employees may not immediately become ill. Store your chemicals in safe areas and allow only authorised workers with appropriate PPE access. Dispose of chemical compounds that are no longer required, and maintain equipment that can emit chemicals under particular conditions.
Fire can be a problem in every workplace, and Dorset Fire Protection data suggests that approximately 22,000 fires occur annually in UK workplaces. For this reason, it is always advisable to have a fire extinguisher available and well maintained. Poorly maintained machines and equipment can cause fires and result in varying degrees of burns and even death. Aside from ensuring proper fire extinguisher maintenance, keep them in easily accessible areas. Ensure you have available fire-resistant workwear and guarantee proper flammable product handling.
Falls and falling objects
Height falls are one of the most common and severest causes of work-related injuries. Individuals who work in elevated locations or operate on roofs are at the most risk. Likewise, falling tools and objects pose a major risk and can lead to severe, life-changing injuries. A solution will be to put practical safety measures to secure the equipment and surroundings while employees work on ladders and scaffolds. Also, check the condition of all safety devices, and secure rails can prevent mishaps on roofs and other elevated workplaces.
Safety is crucial, and paying attention to these common workplace hazards can enable you to eliminate some of the common health and injury risks. Consider the above tips to make your workplace safer for everybody.