Workplace Safety: The Whys and Hows

by | Oct 29, 2022 | Business Feature

No one wants to become injured or ill because of something that happens in the workplace, but people can also be surprisingly careless on the job. This can happen for any number of reasons: poor training, not enough time to finish a task, or simply assuming that it can’t happen to them. Employees in certain environments, such as an office, might think that safety is mainly a concern for people on construction sites or in factories. In fact, it is critical in every type of workplace.

The FMCSA and Fleet Management

This is an area where committing to safe practices is vital whether your fleet consists of a handful of small vehicles or dozens of trucks. Careless driving affects not just employees themselves but anyone who is on the road with them. This is why the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is so dedicated to its mission to reduce accidents, injuries and deaths involving buses and trucks. Their CSA program monitors carriers and intervenes when they have safety problems. Every carrier has a CSA score, and you need to understand yours so that you can maintain a good record.

Maintain Productivity

It is important to stay safe when recruiting new hires just as much as it is important to prioritize safety on the daily. One reason that making an effort to reduce workplace-related accidents and illnesses is that these have a significant effect on productivity. If your employees are sick or injured, they either will not work at full capacity or won’t be available to work at all. Injuries and illnesses also affect morale. When accidents happen, they need to be investigated, equipment might have to be inoperable for a time and employers rack up costs in worker’s compensation. In some industries, guidelines and protocols for preventing accidents can seem as though they slow things down, but in the long run, they will help ensure that the business continues to run smoothly.

Office Hazards

This is an environment where employees might assume that they don’t really have to think about workplace safety, but that isn’t the case. It may not be scaffolding on the 20th story or a busy factory floor, but even the quietest office can still be detrimental to the health and well-being of staff. Potential hazards include carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive motion injuries, substance abuse and violence from other employees or the public. There is also a danger of slip and fall accidents, fire hazards and other threats.

Change in Culture

One of the best ways to cultivate a safety mindset in the workplace is to make sure it’s embedded in the culture. You’ll have an easier time building a positive environment that is inclusive of safety if it’s in place from day one versus trying to change long standing but dangerous behaviors, yet a cultural shift toward safety can happen at any company. There needs to be adequate training, and it needs to be updated from time to time. Those updates should be more frequent in industries where accidents are common. Employees should be encouraged to follow safety protocols. Penalizing them with policies such as not allowing them to clock in until they’ve donned protective gear could increase the likelihood that they will rush through the process.

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