Workplace safety awareness doesn’t happen automatically. Whether you are a full-time, contract or temporary worker, knowing how to react and make well informed safety decisions is essential to preventing common injuries. This all starts with communication and proper training so that you understand best practices and policies for safety standards at work. Here are ten workplace safety tips to ensure that you stay safe at work every day:
1. Wear Proper Clothing
Whether you’re operating machinery or working with hazardous materials, proper clothing is one of the key workplace safety tips. Proper footwear is just as important, as it prevents you from falling or slipping on wet surfaces. Ask your employer what protective gear they require you to wear, and what, if any, they provide.
2. Receive Training
Don’t assume you can teach yourself how to operate heavy machinery. The results could be fatal. Take any necessary training and use caution with unfamiliar equipment. If you work on a ladder, make sure you know proper safety procedures for working from heights. If you have questions or are unsure, ask before you try something yourself.
3. Comply with Industry Standards
Ensure your employer complies with all proper standards. For example, OSHA has standards when it comes to working with hazardous materials, so it’s especially important to use material safety data sheets (MSDS) for hazardous substances. If you’re concerned your employer is not meeting these standards, report it to human resources.
4. Lift with Caution
You may feel like you are strong enough to lift certain objects, but the result of improper lifting can be devastating if you were to seriously injure your back. For objects over 50 pounds, use machinery to lift the object, instead. It’s also important to ensure you’re using proper form, lifting with your legs instead of your back, and always wearing a back brace if you do repetitive lifting.
5. Don’t Overexert Yourself
Overexertion is a major cause for injury. If you’re getting tired, take a break. Make sure you take all breaks provided to allow for adequate rest because bodily injuries from overexertion can be extremely serious and expensive.
6. Read Warning Signs
It is crucial to your safety that you read all signage in your workplace. Signs often warn workers of hazardous conditions or machinery. Take them seriously. Don’t ignore or skim through them. Read the signs fully, and make sure you understand the risks before you proceed.
7. Be Aware
You can prevent injuries by being aware of your surroundings and paying attention to where you’re walking. Walking into objects is a common workplace accident, so pay special attention when you’re walking through a new area and adhere to walkways so as to avoid dangerous machinery.
8. Cover Your Ears and Eyes
If you work with hazardous materials or in an environment where loud noises occur regularly, wearing proper ear and eye equipment is vital to safety. Protective eyewear prevents injury from fire or chemical exposure and ear protection can prevent hearing loss or permanent damage. Industrial deafness is a real problem; don’t let it happen to you.
9. Adhere to Ergonomic Standards
Ergonomics is the science of adjusting the job to fit the body’s needs. Whether you’re standing all day at a machine or working at a computer, make sure the equipment is at the proper height so that you don’t strain your neck. Keyboard height can also affect your back, shoulders, and hands. Make sure your work station is customized for you and your body’s needs.
10. Address Injuries Immediately
If you’re injured at work, make sure you address it right away. Report all injuries and seek medical attention immediately. File a compensation claim if necessary and don’t allow injuries to linger – it could lead to permanent damage.
If you adhere to these workplace safety tips, you will increase your awareness of what it means to be safe at work and in doing so, avoid potential injuries. To learn more about increasing safety awareness in your workplace, contact Marlin today.