Every year, the National Safety Council (NSC) declares June National Safety Month. This year marks the 10th anniversary of National Safety Month. The 10th year anniversary theme, “Making Our World a Safer Place,” reflects the National Safety Council’s mission to prevent accidental injury and death by educating people about adopting and maintaining safe, healthy behaviors in all aspects of their lives.
Throughout the month, the NSC will address safety risks and provide injury prevention tips applicable to the workplace, driving, and the home and community. When it comes to the workplace, the tips focus on ergonomics, personal protective equipment, lifting, and falls. This article will focus on helpful workplace tips. For a full listing of tips, visit www.nsc.org.
• Reduce the amount of time spent standing on hard surfaces. Use anti-fatigue mats.
• Automate highly repetitive tasks whenever possible. If you can’t, provide short breaks, let the worker control the pace, increase the variety of tasks, or provide job rotation.
• Use carts to move heavy loads. Pushing is preferable to pulling.
• Periodic worksite analyses can uncover ergonomic problems before they lead to injuries.
Personal Protective Equipment
• If you need a hard hat, make sure it fits right and that the suspension is adjusted properly.
• Ask your safety supervisor or industrial hygienist to recommend the right kind of eye protection for the job, taking into account prescription glasses or contact lenses.
• If you use chemicals, cleaning solvents, etc., make sure to wear gloves and protective clothing that resist chemicals.
• Always protect your hands from injury. Take off rings, bracelets, and watches before you start work. Use gloves that are appropriate to the work you’re doing.
• Wear the correct safety footwear for your work. Have it fitted so it fits right and feels comfortable.
• Never assume you can lift something yourself. Estimate the weight of the object by tilting it up slowly. If it’s hard to move, it’s too heavy to lift. Get someone’s help or use a lifting aid.
• Keep the object you’re lifting as close to your body as possible.
• Don’t twist your back as you lift. Instead, move your feet to turn.
Falls in the Workplace
• Keep all aisles, stairs, and walkways free of clutter.
• Turn on the lights before you enter a room.
• Broken stairs or loose stair coverings? Report them right away.
• Clean up or report spills immediately.
• Stay away from shortcuts. The route less traveled may be less safe.
• Place chains, guardrails, or warning tapes around elevated areas. IBI