Did you ever stop to think why crucial information, like safety warnings, is always communicated in the very same spot where the eventual danger is?In any work environment, ensuring safety is assuring productivity and so it has never been more important to ensure visual efficiency. To really get relevant messages across, it helps if it is placed exactly where it needs to be apprehended, extremely visible, and displayed in the most clear and universal way possible.
Good Recommended Practices for Health and Safety in the Workplace
When it comes to create a safe and healthy workplace, identifying and assessing regularly possible hazards and risks is mandatory:
- Collect and review information about the hazards present or likely to be present in the workplace.
- Conduct initial and periodic inspections of the workplace to identify new or recurring hazards.
- Investigate injuries, illnesses, incidents, and close calls/near misses to determine the underlying hazards, their causes, and safety and health programs.
- Group similar incidents and identify trends in injuries, illnesses, and hazards reported.
- Consider hazards associated with emergency or non-routine situations.
- Determine the severity and likelihood of incidents that could result for each hazard identified, and use this information to prioritize corrective actions.
All eventual workplace hazards or constraints, as well as safety or emergency procedures that can prevent it should be regularly identified, listed and its communication planned. This should apply not only to those measures that are mandatory by law, but also those that go beyond immediate or direct physical or biological harm but also those that can have a huge impact on productivity in the medium or long-term,, like for instances ergonomic risk factors.
Identify and Communicate Safety and Health Risks Clearly
After clearly identifying all kinds of possible risks, it is time to make sure they are all clearly communicated to employees and eventual facility users. To do so you need to have display and signage options that really stand out in your workplace, and start conveying messages using:
- Universally recognized, internationally consistent hazard pictograms
- Signal words, such as “danger” and “warning”, that have immediate impact
- Strong hazard statements, that translate possible tragic outcome, such as “fatal if swallowed”
- Always include and highlight precautionary statements at all times also, such as “wear protective gloves and glasses”.
Provide all Relevant and Necessary Information to Help Prevent and Assuage Risks
It is extremely crucial that you communicate on the spot potential health effects, precautions for use, safe storage suggestions, emergency first aid instructions and contact numbers for a responsible person, entity that can provide further essential information in how to proceed. For example, in workplaces where hazardous substances are frequently used, not only the spots where these are used should be properly signalized, places of storage and the substances containers should also be labelled and properly identified as well as precautionary measures and emergency info and contacts included. In the case that the safety warning or procedure you are communicating is part of your company’s Occupational Safety and Health Programs or Campaigns, you should also have a close-by reference to the programs’ guidelines.
Nowadays if you are not able to assure a safe and healthy workplace, you are not able to achieve maximum productivity. Identifying and listing hazards is crucial, but if you cannot grant visual efficiency with relevant messages and warnings any of your efforts to prevent it will eventually be useless.