Avoiding Workplace Accidents

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Regardless of what kind of company you run, workplace accidents and injuries are always a potential risk. Some of the major risks - and those with the potential to do the most harm - are in workplaces such as factories, where machinery is part of day to day workings. Here’s how to avoid these accidents, protect your employees, clients, and your company, and what to do when accidents do happen.

Training

Providing adequate training to all staff is essential to preventing accidents. Any staff who will be operating machinery need specific training on the equipment they will be using, general training is not always sufficient. Stay strict on who is allowed to operate what equipment and be clear that no-one should use said equipment unless or until they have received the proper training.

Maintenance

Maintenance is quite possibly the most important aspect of minimizing incidents. Three of the main points are machine maintenance, vehicle maintenance, and electrics.

Any company vehicles, particularly if they do significant mileage, should be serviced regularly and all appropriate repairs and replacements done promptly (tires, brakes etc.). This will be to your benefit for insurance purposes as well as when it comes to the safety of your employees and others on the road.

Machinery should be maintained in part to prevent production halts and resulting profit loss, but primarily for the safety of those using the equipment. A loose saw blade or an electrical short on factory equipment can be detrimental, not only to the individual involved, be it their health, life or livelihood, but also to your company’s reputation.

Electrical and wiring maintenance is a key safety feature and many states require business owners to show that they have had certain checks and repairs done. Electrical wiring, over the years, gets weather damaged or chewed by rats or mice. Faulty wiring is a big fire hazard, not to mention that most 21st century companies come to a standstill without power.

It’s advisable to have at the very least a maintenance log, but ideally CMMS software that allows you to schedule, assign and monitor maintenance across all areas of your company.

Safety Measures

By law, businesses are required to have a certain number of fire extinguishers in the building in case a fire breaks out. Keep these in working order and make sure your employees know how to use them. A basic first aid kit is advisable and, if you feel it’s necessary, have a few employees trained in first aid.

A blanket rule on proper safety gear should be a given. Eye protection, head gear, ear protection and steel toe caps boots are common factory floor requirements. Whichever applies to your facility should be mandatory.

Operating Requirements

Intoxicated, ill or exhausted employees who can’t do their job properly are likely to endanger themselves and others. If you feel any employee is unfit to operate machinery - send them home.

Keep your safety measures up to date and enforced for the safety of employees and for the sake of public liability.


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