One of the greatest menaces of capitalism is the lack of attention that industrialists have had for workplace safety. The history of industrial accidents is full of cases where lives could have been easily saved with simple safety equipment and training in place. Here are some tips that can help your protect your employees, keep your premises safer and save you from a lot of legal and financial hassle in case of an accident.
Training and Drills
No matter how advanced your safety technologies and protocols are, nothing will be meaningful if your workforce will not know how to execute them. Each of your workers must be aware of what needs to be done in a specific situation. That can only be done by a consistent training program. The training should be reinforced by follow-up sessions and mock drills so that each worker has a chance to execute the systems first-hand. There have been many incidents where workers were injured despite having safety equipment in place only because they did not have the right training and were not aware of executing the protocols.
Workplace fires are one of the most common industrial hazards globally. If your premises are dominated by machines and circuit boards, there is a risk of fire breakouts at any moment. Unfortunately, many minor fire incidents in the history of industrial accidents turned nasty because there was no in-house firefighting equipment. The response time of a government fire fighting service can easily allow a minor harmless fire breakout to turn into something catastrophic. Therefore advanced fire alarms and fire extinguishing equipment should be easily accessible for your workers to deal with such breakouts.
Remember the horrifying fire breakout in a denim factory in Bangladesh that was producing garments for Zara killing over 1000 workers and several others injured? A thousand lives could have been saved only if there were emergency exits allowing people to escape. There have also been cases where the emergency exits were there but workers did not know that they existed and how to plan their escape. Well marked emergency exits and an escape plan pasted on every floor does not require much investment but can help you save precious lives.
If you have an industrial setup where a worker might come in contact with a hazardous chemical or gas, protective gear is a must. It is the responsibility of the employer to decide what suitable Personal Protective Equipment would be required, such as hazmat suits, gloves, and specific masks and provide them adequately. Reports have suggested that many labs and mine workers have contracted lifelong diseases and even cancer because of unprotected exposure to harmful chemical compounds and gases. Such risks can be easily eliminated by providing protective gear.
At some point in time, the machine or equipment in your factory will undergo repairs and maintenance. This is a ticking time bomb if there is a risk of the machine turning active accidentally while the repairs are going on or while a worker is in the proximity of the equipment. Lockout Tagout locks should be used to avoid such situations and workers should be trained to use them effectively.