A Million Reasons Why Workplace Safety Awareness Never Ends

Reasons Why Workplace Safety Awareness

What are some of the reasons why workplace safety awareness never ends? Here’s a workplace safety scenario quiz: A worker is walking across a warehouse to check on a shipment. At the same time there are three forklifts operating in the area, five trucks unloading nearby, a plumber on a ladder fixing a leak and 130 other employees in the area doing their jobs. What are the odds of something going wrong and causing an injury? It’s situations like these that make one consider the many reasons for workplace safety.

The complexities of Workplace accident prevention

When it comes to the likelihood of workplace accidents, figuring out the specific odds are almost impossible because of the unpredictable behavior of people. Will a forklift operator forget to stop at an intersection? Will the plumber let water leak on the floor creating a slipping hazard? It’s unknowable, but the possible combinations are staggering and impossible to anticipate which is the reason why workplace safety is a critical and an ongoing effort.

How most workers mitigate CORPORATE safety issues

Even when the conditions are very knowable, workplace accident odds can be amazing. For an unrelated example, let’s say you have 10 people over for a birthday dinner and you want to make sure certain relatives don’t sit next to other ones. Do you know how many seating combinations there are? 362,000 (9 x 8 x 7, etc., or 9!). Luckily you don’t have to consider each possibility because you know there are only two or three people you need to be concerned with. It’s the same as walking through the warehouse; you’d likely walk around the plumbers and listen for the forklifts, greatly reducing – but not eliminating – the chance of injury.

Consider This: The Odds of a Workplace Accident in the Warehouse

Still considering the many reasons why workplace safety? Here’s another way of looking at it. Let’s say you’ve been working at that warehouse for 5 years. You’ve walked through it thousands of times and figure you’re familiar with anything that could happen. Let’s compare that to another type of controllable situation, a game of solitaire. When you layout a new deal, did you know that you are probably the first person in history ever to see that combination of cards? The possible combinations of dealt cards is 52(!), or 8.0658e67, which is an 8 followed by 67 digits. Most people underestimate how many different possibilities there are in a given potential workplace accident situation.

Ongoing Workplace safety Awareness communication is key

The point is that when you think you have all the bases covered, you don’t when you consider the above reasons why workplace safety. We all forget things, get lazy and too comfortable in environments where awareness is constantly needed – especially in the workplace! And that’s why workplace safety communications never ends. There are just SO many things that can go wrong that we need to keep pointing out the risks and reasons for workplace safety.

2016 Workplace Injury Statistics

In 2016 there were 2.6 million non-fatal workplace injuries in the U.S. That just goes to show that, despite decades of constantly working on safety awareness, bad things still happen.

Just like not seating those squabbling relatives next to each at dinner, the safety manager needs to evaluate the primary risks in an area, mitigate them as much as possible, then communicate about how to be aware of those and similar risks. It’s a never-ending process, at least until some AI-infused robots can foresee all possibilities. Until then we need to keep up the communication with workplace safety solutions that are efficient to use and effective at heightening safety awareness.

Frank Kenna III
March 1, 2018

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