Workplace safety explains the collective plans, procedures, and action adopted to prevent or control the hazards present in the workplace.
The workplace is always encompassed with hazards of different sorts with their accompanying risk. The risk could be high, medium or low. Depending on the level of risk, a suitable control measures needs to be adopted to control it.
Hazards workers get exposed to in the workplace includes: Physical hazards like Noise, vibration, lighting, electricity, heat, cold, nuisance dust, fire/explosion, machine grinding, working space; Chemical hazards like gas exposure, dusts, fumes, vapours, liquids; Ergonomic hazards; psychological hazards; biological hazards, etc.
Some of the risks in the workplace are:
- Falling object
- Fall from height
- Contact with equipment or machinery
- Trip and falls
- Flying objects/Particles
- Confine space
- Electric shock
- Respiratory risks from dust and fumes
- Incision/Laceration, etc
Some people may be confused at this point since some of us cannot really differentiate between hazards and risks. To get better clarification, check – The salient relationship between Hazard – Risk – Accidents
Ensuring safety in the workplace is everyone’s responsibility. The employer is saddled with the duty of care while the employees are saddled with the duty of responsibility. When these duties are carried out adequately, we can sure say the we are working towards a safer workplace.
To ensure safety in the workplace, some steps should be taken. In the next paragraph, i will enumerate some ways to ensure workplace safety
5 Proven Ways to Ensure Workplace Safety
- Employers should encourage competence during employee selection. Also employees induction, training and re-training should be encouraged.
- A clear and accessible line of communication should be established for free flow of information.
- Emergency management plan and procedures should be established and communicated to everyone in the workplace.
- Workplace safety plan and procedures should be established and actively monitored for a successful implementation.
- Policies should be drawn to manage the different areas of activities in the workplace. Example: Traffic management plan, community liaison, Substance abuse, occupational safety and health, waste management, etc.