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Tips on Workplace Safety and Hazards

Tips on Workplace Safety and Hazards

Every business should place workplace safety at the top of its priority list. After all, an organization’s efficiency directly depends on the well-being of its employees. However, without a comprehensive safety plan in place, businesses leave themselves vulnerable to various workplace accidents and injuries. In this post, we will discuss workplace safety and workplace hazards. We will talk about common workplace accidents and injuries, workplace safety strategies, and accident prevention tips.

 

What are Workplace Hazards

Workplace hazards are any potential risks that can cause harm to employees in the workplace. These hazards can be physical, chemical, biological, or psychological. Common workplace hazards include slips and falls, electrical shocks, exposure to toxic chemicals, and repetitive motion injuries.

Businesses need to identify all potential workplace hazards and create a safety plan to mitigate these risks. By taking proactive measures to prevent workplace accidents and injuries, businesses can create a safer work environment for their employees.

 

6 Common Types of Workplace Hazards

It’s easy to overlook hazards, especially if your business isn’t aware of them. That’s why it’s important to identify workplace safety issues first before working on a way to prevent them. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) identifies six common types of workplace hazards:

Safety

A safety hazard is the most common type of workplace hazard. It involves unsafe working conditions that can cause illness, injury, or even death. Here are some of the basic safety hazards that occur in the workplace:

  • Spills on floors, tripping hazards like cords running across the floor or blocked pathways.
  • Working from heights, including ladders, roofs, scaffolding, or any elevated work area.
  • Electrical hazards like damaged cords, faulty wiring, or missing ground pins
  • Unguarded machinery and moving parts that a worker can accidentally come into contact with.
  • Confined spaces
  • Machinery or equipment-related hazards (lock out/tag out, forklifts, boiler safety, etc.)

 

Biological

Biological hazards are associated with working people, animals, or infectious plant materials. Workers at risk of biological hazards include those who work in schools, farms, daycare facilities, universities/colleges, laboratories, hospitals, nursing homes, emergency response, and outdoor occupations. Some of the basic types of biological hazards that workers face include:

  • Blood and other bodily fluids
  • Mold/fungi
  • Insect bites
  • Viruses and bacteria
  • Bird droppings and other animal wastes

 

Chemical

Chemical hazards are found in nearly every workplace. They can be in the form of fumes, vapors, gasses, liquids, or solids. Chemicals can be safe for others, while sensitive individuals may have an allergic reaction. Here are some of the ways that workers can be exposed to chemical hazards:

  • Liquids in unlabelled containers (e.g., acids, paints, cleaning products, solvents)
  • Gasses like carbon monoxide, acetylene, helium, and propane
  • Vapors and fumes coming from welding, soldering and using chemicals
  • Dust from sanding, grinding or cutting wood or stone
  • Flammable materials like gasoline, alcohol, solvents, and other explosive chemicals
  • Asbestos fibers
  • Pesticides

 

Ergonomic

Ergonomic hazards are those that result in musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) from repetitive motion, awkward postures, or manual handling tasks. Here are some common ergonomic hazards found in the workplace:

  • Repetitive motion injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome and tendonitis
  • Overexertion from lifting heavy objects or using excessive force
  • Awkward postures from sitting or standing in the same position for long periods
  • Vibration exposure from using tools like jackhammers and drills
  • Improper adjusted workstations and chairs
  • Poor posture
  • Frequent lifting
  • Prolonged repetition of the same movement

 

Work Organization

Work organization hazards are stressors that cause tension, anxiety, and other psychological effects. Here are some of the common work organization hazards:

  • Workload demands (e.g., Long hours, Night shifts)
  • Respect (or lack thereof)
  • Inadequate break time
  • Poor lighting
  • Loud noise exposure
  • Workplace violence
  • Poor ventilation or temperature extremes in the workplace
  • Sexual harassment
  • Social support/relations
  • Intensity and pace

 

Physical

Last but not least, physical hazards are factors in the workplace that can cause injuries, illness, or death. They can be either man-made or naturally occurring. Here are a few examples of physical hazards:

  • Radiation (e.g., X-rays, microwaves)
  • Laser beams
  • Cuts from sharp objects like knives and blades
  • Burns from flames, hot liquids
  • Exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun.
  • Constant loud noise
  • Extreme temperatures (hot and cold)

 

How to Prevent Workplace accidents

Now that you are aware of the common workplace hazards, it is important to learn how to prevent them. Here’s a general list of tips on how to prevent workplace accidents:

  1. Inspect the workplace regularly and identify potential hazards.
  2. Correct any unsafe conditions or practices immediately.
  3. Provide personal protective equipment (PPE) and ensure that workers know how to use it properly.
  4. Implement safe work practices and procedures, and enforce them consistently.
  5. Train workers on safety procedures, including emergency evacuation plans.
  6. Invest in automated systems and equipment to reduce the need for manual labor.
  7. Keep the workplace clean and organized to prevent trip hazards.
  8. Promote a culture of safety in the workplace.

 

By following these tips, you can create a safer workplace and reduce the risk of accidents and injuries. 

 

Why Use DataMyte?

If you want to mitigate hazards in your workplace, you will need to use certain tools that will help you identify potential risks. DATAMYTE is software that can help you do just that. It is a comprehensive solution that will help you execute certain safety measures such as Risk Assessment, Job Hazard Analysis, etc.

The DataMyte Digital Clipboard, in particular, is a workflow automation software that offers various tools that will help you conduct safety assessments within your workplace on top of turning data into actionable results.

The DataMyte Digital Clipboard lets you:

  • Create: Our easy drag and drop workflow creator lets you create smart forms, checklists, and entire workflows from scratch. You can also use our templates or convert existing ones from any device.
  • Collect: The checklists and smart forms you create using our intuitive software ensure data integrity. For optimum data accuracy, you can also add other elements such as time photos, time stamps, electronic signatures, bar codes, and even geo tracking. You also can automate workflow alerts to each of your safety teams in real-time.
  • Analyze and Report: Deliver data-driven insights to your team at the right time. You can also create customized reports and share them with your team for maximum productivity and successful safety outcomes.

 

If you want to learn more about how the DataMyte Digital Clipboard can help you create a safer workplace, please contact us today. You can also check out the official DATAMYTE website to learn more about our other products and services.

 

Conclusion

Identifying workplace safety hazards is just as important as knowing how to prevent them. By following the tips in this post, you can create a safer workplace and reduce the risk of accidents and injuries. Don’t forget to use tools like DataMyte to help you execute proper safety measures.

 

 

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