When was the last time you collided with somebody going through a door or tripped over something at work? Quite recently, I imagine. It happens all the time. These are just some of the minor hazards those of us who go out to work every day face. Usually, these bumps and scrapes are not serious. However, well over 3.5 million people end up in hospital emergency departments each year as a result of workplace injuries. In an ideal world, your workplace should be a source of fulfillment and even, dare I say it, fun. But at the very least, it should be the place from which you arrive home safely every day. Thus, it is important for both employees and employers to take steps to avoid workplace injuries.
Company Safety Rules
Mostly, we count on employers to provide us with safe workplaces, to conform to health and safety legislation, and to provide facilities for emergency treatment – from first aid kits to resuscitators. But, there’s also a lot that we as individuals can do to protect ourselves from on-the-job hazards or to help others in the case of an emergency.
I’m not just talking about exercising caution when opening and shutting doors or keeping your eyes peeled for obstacles, though these are important. Employees should be more broadly aware of company safety rules and know how to respond to emergencies.
Your employer might provide written safety guidelines, which you should always make time to read. There could also be qualified first-aiders nearby that you should get to know. Further, you should know where first aid supplies and fire extinguishers are stored, and the layout of emergency escape routes.
6 Workplace Safety Guidelines to Follow
Here are a few more guidelines for you to consider for avoiding workplace injuries:
Wear appropriate clothing for the job. For instance: no loose items near machinery. Use eye protection, hard-hats, safety masks, and reinforced shoes when appropriate. Never cut corners or think you can make do with anything less than regulations or common sense stipulate.
Monitor your workplace temperature and environment. If it’s too hot or too cold, too stuffy, or there are unfamiliar odors, alert your supervisor or senior worker.
Use the right tools for the job. And by that I mean everything from a letter opener and staple remover to electrical appliances. If you don’t know how to use a tool properly, then ask. Additionally, always store sharp items, like scissors, when not in use.
Mitigate potential hazards. Don’t leave objects where other people (or you!) might collide with them. If you spot an obvious hazard, move it if permissible and appropriate, or try to make others aware of it (perhaps by using a warning cone or a simple sign).
If you have allergies (e.g. latex) or phobias (e.g. confined spaces), ensure that your employer and colleagues know.
Finally, if you are injured or feel unwell, especially if you are dizzy or suffering severe head or chest pains, tell someone immediately. Time is of the essence if something serious, like a stroke or heart attack, threatens. There are no points for keeping your mouth shut and being a hero.
Protect Yourself and Your Workplace
You will find more useful information on how to avoid workplace injuries at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. You can also think about becoming a first aider – your local Red Cross chapter can tell you how.
If you are a business owner or employer in the Tri-Cities or elsewhere, be sure your business carries workers compensation insurance. This provides the coverage you need to protect your Tennessee business in the event of a work-related injury.
If you have any questions about workplace safety or workers compensation insurance, please contact our Johnson City insurance office at (423) 292-4142. You can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Voted Johnson City’s best business insurance agency in 2020, we would be happy to give you more information and help you with any of your questions.