Is your workplace safe? Or are there any blind spots, waiting to trip all your well, thought-out safety strategies? Find out now.
Workplace safety is a never-ending process. When implemented correctly, it can help you avoid accidents at your workplace and prevent lives from getting lost. Most businesses focus on achieving the best safety practices at work. They provide employees with safety gear, ensure equipment is maintained correctly, and conduct safety training.
While all this is commendable, what happens often is that businesses fail to take note of “blind spots.” These are safety hazards that are often overlooked leading to injuries and even deaths.
Here, in today’s post, we give you a list of standard safety blind spots that are often overlooked in several workplaces.
- Removing Safety Equipment While on the Job
This is one of the biggest safety blind spots that most companies suffer from. Very often, employees at workplaces remove safety equipment to finish off a task quickly. For instance, employees in garment industry working on stitching machines most often remove or lift the needle guards up to speedup their work however it cause finger piercing by the needle similarly employees working in high places are required to wear a safety harness always. However, employees remove this harness if they find it cumbersome or to make it easy to reach otherwise hard to reach areas.
While it’s true that safety equipment can sometimes be a hindrance, they are provided for a specific reason. So, it’s the duty of the management and safety managers to ensure employees wear them at all times.
If at all, employees are unable to finish a task while wearing the equipment, the work should be put off till a workable solution is found.
- Forgetting to unplug devices from the Power Sockets
When employees work with any type of equipment that runs on power like machines, tools, and vehicles, it’s essential to remember that these devices can get activated at any time, if they continue to remain plugged in.
After employees finish using these devices, it’s essential that you instruct them to follow the proper lockout/tag out policies, so that they don’t get accidentally re-energized. Apart from switching off the power supply, employees must be trained to unplug the devices completely to avoid any mishaps and other accidents. All the above said instructions must be followed even during maintenance procedures.
For instance, if a part gets stuck in a press machine, it’s very tempting for employees to reach in and grab the piece so that they can continue with the task at hand. This is highly dangerous. For instance, if the machine gets active somehow, it could lead to severe injuries.
So, always make it a point to unplug devices after work and during maintenance periods.
- Walking through Hazardous Zones without the Right Personal Protection Equipment
In most companies, each area will have a different set of safety rules. For instance, the safety rules and protective gear for the weld floor are miles apart from that of a construction zone.
Very often, employees who work in a particular zone are well aware of the rules about their area. However, other employees who cross this zone tend to ignore the right personal protection gear. This is because they assume that since they don’t work in this area, the safety rules don’t pertain to them.
This is highly risky. Always remember to wear the right protective equipment before you step into other zones outside of your work area. Also, when maintenance is being done in a particular zone, it pays to keep a full lockout/tag so that others don’t enter the area unknowingly.
- Low Visibility Areas
Working in areas with limited or low visibility is one of the most dangerous safety blind spots in an organization. When we mean low visibility areas, we refer to places in your workplace that don’t receive sufficient light or areas with sharp corners that aren’t illuminated by light bulbs and so on. Such low visibility areas pose serious hazards, especially when dealing with heavy machinery like forklifts, etc.
Very often, businesses use reflective floor marking tape or glow in the dark lights to provide guidance to employees in low visibility areas. By marking the direction to the exit, you can help employees find their way outside without bumping into sharp objects. Additionally, by separating pathways, one for entering and one for exiting the zone, you can ensure that no two employees bump into each other.
- Not being aware of Equipment Limits
Almost all equipment have set restrictions specified. These are maximum values beyond which it isn’t advisable to use the particular equipment. For instance, all ladders come with weight limits. If a person beyond this weight limit climbs on the ladder, they face huge risks of the ladder falling and collapsing. Similarly, scaffolding has weight and height limits too.
To make sure that employees are aware of these risks, you can stick labels with the equipment restrictions printed on them. This ensures that employees don’t cross these limits unknowingly.
Always Keep an Eye for Safety Blind Spots
These are the five common types of blind spots found in businesses across industries. Apart from these, different organizations have various other blind spots. Blind spots not only increase the risks to the employees working there but also pose a serious threat to the entire safety of the facility itself.
It’s the duty of safety managers to keep an eye out for safety blind spots and take the right steps to eliminate them from the workplace. Also, finding safety blind spots is a tricky process and becomes complicated when you try to do it on your own.
This is why industry leaders suggest that you hire third-party safety consultants to help you with the task. After all, a fresh set of eyes are bound to find the blind spots that you have overlooked for years.
To schedule a site visit by our team of safety experts, give us a ring at 0124-266-3021 or drop in a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.