Safety hazards in the office and workplace must be eliminated in order to create a safe work environment. Making this happen will require good planning and a lot of effort from everyone in the office. Common hazards in the office usually are due to falls, lifting injuries, cuts, electricity and fires. Sure, they are dangerous but can be prevented. Here is a quick checklist summarizing the process, so that everyone can recognize and address workplace safety issues, how neutralize common safety hazards, and how to stay safe at work.
Office Safety Plan Guidelines
- Try to look out for and report hazards
- If one is noted, notify the supervisor or a safety officer immediately
- Make sure everyone in the office is aware of the hazard or problem
- File a report or document the problem or hazard for future reference
- Get some training and learn how to identify potential hazards and how to deal them.
- Safety is everyone’s concern. Always check everyone is doing their job correctly and safely.
- Encourage everyone to ask questions, check with supervisors if unsure how to do a job safely.
- Keep an eye on your co-workers, especially those who are not yet familiar with the hazards and other safety issues.
- If asked to do a task that is unsafe, speak up and let the supervisor know that the task is dangerous, difficult, or that you do not know how to do the job.
- Always wear any personal protective equipment. These are often provided for by the employer.
- Know the location of the first aid kit, or the fire extinguisher. More importantly, know how to use them properly.
- Keep the work areas and passage always free of clutter that someone can bump into or trip and fall over.
- Use cable covers on exposed cabling running across office floors which could easily trip someone. A simple cable cover can help prevent this common office hazard.
- Turn off the lights, unplug or turn of any office equipment when not in use.
- Know what to do in an office emergency and where to get help.
Ideally, an office should already have a safety plan in place and have a security committee to conduct regular safety inspection. Working at home or for a small business is no excuse. Once the safety committee is established, along with the safety guidelines, safety meetings must be conducted regularly in order to go over the safety rules and regulations, making sure everyone knows or becomes familiar with them. During these meetings, everyone can take some simple steps to help prevent office hazards and work injuries, and generally promote worker health. Talking about safety must always be a priority, so that when something does happen, everyone knows what to do right away. Review any concerns reported and decide how those concerns will be addressed. Where safety is concerned, it never hurts to be over prepared.