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Workplace Safety Tips


Introduction

Most often when we design workplaces, attention goes more to cost and convenience sometimes at the expense of safety. Yet the cost of accommodating and putting into place protection against these safety hazards piles up over time, when it would be far more cost-effective to incorporate safety features into the design from the outset.

As far as health and safety in the workplace is concerned, there are a few tips to remember and keep in mind in order to increase workplace safety and minimise the chances of an accident or injury occurring.



Reduce Workplace Stress

The company has to find a way to mitigate the risks when the work involves long working hours, involves lifting heavy loads, has constant job insecurity and has too much unresolved conflict. The end results and consequences can include stress, depression, cliques and problems with focus and delivery.



Understand the Risks

Every work site has some risks inherent to the kind of work that is done for which it is not reasonably practical to eliminate entirely. It is a prudent safety goal to invest in finding out the potential hazards in your job space. Once the risks are well mapped out, measured and defined, invest in relevant health and safety training to minimise these risks and reduce the potential for accidents to take place.



Take Regular Breaks

Schedule the tasks in such a way that the most difficult work is done at the time of day when most effort can be put into it. Always have time for activities or short exercises that energise you and keep you fresh for your work. Also watch out for signs of fatigue and exhaustion which predisposes you to injuries, not to mention a loss of concentration and focus which can result in serious consequences if it happened to someone who was driving large vehicles such as excavators for instance.



Use Mechanical Aids

Rely on wheelbarrows, fork lifts, tongs, electronically-powered lifting equipment and any other appropriate aids around you, rather than trying to manually lift up these objects. Even when you think that you can manage the load by yourself, if these aids are present and available to assist then it is worth utilising them. Workplace ergonomics also play a key role in the cause or prevention of injuries. Rearrange your workspace in such a way that everything is within easy reach and reduces the amount of strain you place upon your body when reaching out for loads and objects.



Wear Protective Equipment

If worn correctly, personal protective equipment (PPE) such as boots, earplugs, ear defenders, hard hats, face masks, safety goggles and suitable gloves can dramatically reduce your risk of injury. Company managers should always invest in and provide quality protective gear which is suitable for the task and inspected regularly. As a worker, you need to attend to the tasks when you are sober and well-rested, and avoid intoxicating substances like alcohol, drugs or medication with strong side effects both before and during work.



Talk Over Any Concerns

Ensure that the company has a clear safety manual, complete with safety instructions and emergency contacts. Also confirm that the human resource office has done everything to make the office space a hazard free environment. Always have a clear reporting policy for safety concerns by employees.



Conduct Safety Training

Carrying out regular and comprehensive workplace safety training that is updated continually to incorporate arising risks in non-negotiable. Always keep an operational safety manual for every employee and have their knowledge updated every few months. As well as general health and safety qualifications like the NEBOSH General Certificate and courses like the IOSH Working Safely, bespoke training which focuses upon the exact risks and dangers associated with that specific place of work is also imperative for reducing the potential for accidents.




Selected Courses

Please see below for a selection of health and safety courses and qualifications which you may be interested in:

NEBOSH National Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety

The NEBOSH National Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety is the flagship NEBOSH qualification, and is the first UK vocational qualification to be developed specifically for health and safety professionals.

The NEBOSH National Diploma provides the core health and safety knowledge (transferable across industry, commerce and the public sector) which, combined with understanding and appropriate application, underpins the competent performance of an occupational health and safety practitioner.

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NEBOSH National General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety

The NEBOSH General Certificate is one of the most popular and widely-held health and safety qualifications in the UK. It is intended to be taken by managers, supervisors and any other employees who require an understanding of general health and safety issues.

The NEBOSH General Certificate covers the main legal requirements for health and safety in the UK, along with the identification and control of workplace hazards, and the practical application of this knowledge. The general content of the NEBOSH General Certificate syllabus means it is suitable and relevant for those working in virtually any industry, and is often used as a solid foundation for those going on to further study and specialising in a particular area such as construction site health and safety or fire safety.

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IOSH Managing Safely Course

The IOSH Managing Safely course is designed for managers and supervisors of organisations in virtually all industry sectors, in order to give them all they need to know to effectively manage health and safety in the workplace.

Recently updated, the new high impact programme covers key health and safety issues, and includes references to international case studies.

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CITB Site Management SMSTS Course

The Site Management Safety Training Scheme (SMSTS) is one of the most popular health and safety training courses, and is intended for construction site managers, project managers and senior supervisors, as well as proprietors of smaller companies.

Client-based personnel would also benefit from attending the SMSTS course.

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CITB Health and Safety Awareness Course

This course is for those who have entered, or are about to enter, the construction and civil engineering industry as a member of the workforce to help them understand the potential hazards that they face at work on site. It aims to provide a practical summary of health and safety, welfare and environmental health and safety issues.

The course also allows delegates to identify their individual responsibilities for looking after themselves and others, what the employer's duties are and what should be done if they think anyone's health and safety is being put at risk.

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