This is our second of three blogs where we will review our top 10 safety hazards from our Wescom WINS Program. In this blog, we are going to review falls/ working at heights, electrical hazards, confined spaces, and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Working at heights demands increased heightened awareness and strict safety measures to prevent falls and protect the well-being of workers. Falls from elevated surfaces are a leading cause of injuries in various industries. To mitigate these risks, consider the following safety precautions:
- Ensure proper training
- Conduct a thorough job safety analysis
- Install guardrails, barriers, and other physical barriers at edges and openings to prevent accidental falls
- Utilize fall arrest or fall restraint systems
- Regularly Inspect Equipment
- Maintain three points of contact while ascending or descending a ladder
- Be mindful of weather conditions that can impact stability at heights
- Develop emergency rescue plans
- Encourage open communication and ensure adequate supervision for tasks at heights
Prioritizing safety measures when working at heights is essential to prevent accidents and protect the well-being of workers.
Electricity is a powerful and essential tool in many workplaces, but its improper use can lead to severe injuries or fatalities. To mitigate electrical hazards and ensure a safe working environment, consider the following safety precautions:
- Provide comprehensive training to workers on the dangers of electrical hazards, safe work practices, and emergency procedures
- Identify and label electrical hazards
- Only allow qualified and trained personnel to work on electrical systems
- Implement and follow lockout/tagout procedures – critical to LOTO is testing out prior to working on energized systems
- Conduct regular equipment inspections
- Keep work areas dry
- Maintain safe distances from live electrical equipment
- Develop emergency response plans
Vigilance, proper training, and adherence to safety protocols are crucial for preventing accidents and protecting the well-being of employees.
Working in confined spaces introduces specific challenges and hazards that demand heightened awareness and adherence to safety procedures. Confined spaces, such as tanks, silos, or pits, can pose serious risks, including poor air quality, engulfment, and restricted entry and exit points. To ensure the safety of workers in confined spaces, consider the following precautions:
- Clearly identify confined spaces in the workplace and assess the associated risks
- Conduct atmospheric testing prior to entry and during the entire duration of work
- Ensure proper ventilation
- Develop an emergency rescue plan
- Provide thorough training to workers
- Maintain continuous communication with workers inside confined spaces
By following these safety measures and fostering a culture of awareness and adherence to protocols, workplaces can minimize the risks associated with working in confined spaces.
In various work environments, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) serves as a vital line of defense against occupational hazards. Its correct usage is integral to ensuring a safe working environment. Consider the following key points regarding PPE safety:
- Conduct an assessment of workplace hazards to determine necessary PPE
- Comprehensive training for workers on proper selection, use and maintenance of PPE
- Ensure that PPE fits properly to provide effective protection
- Regular inspection and maintenance
- Foster a culture of compliance by emphasizing the importance of wearing PPE consistently
A well-implemented PPE program not only protects individual workers but also contributes to a safer and more productive work environment.
Check back in the next blog for the final 3 top safety hazards: Ergonomics, JSA’s and Mobile Equipment/ Excavation.
Remember: Someone is waiting for you to come home!