The health and safety of the workforce should be a key priority for business owners. Whatever the industry, whether you’re a site manager on a building project or you run an office space, employers have a duty of care to their employees.
However, while workplace safety is always important, this is especially the case where there is a greater risk to the health of employees. Construction sites and industrial settings in particular are known to be high-risk workplaces.
If you’re an employer or business owner who is focusing on how to prevent accidents, read on. Here, we bring you top tips to help keep you and your staff safe.
Carry out risk assessments
Regularly checking the work area for risks is an important part of any health and safety strategy. It’s a good starting point for your strategy, too. These include physical risks, such as trip hazards; mental risks, such as having a culture of long hours; chemical risks, including asbestos and lead; and biological, such as a risk of encountering infectious diseases.
Assess where there could be any issues and take steps to address these.
Educating your team
Training is a crucial part of the health and safety process. The right training can help to prevent accidents and increase awareness while workers are onsite – whether that’s in an office setting or on a building site.
For example, some workers based in warehouses or in the construction industry will need to be trained in driving a forklift truck. Before they hop behind the wheel, they’ll must pass training, otherwise they could cause an accident. Similarly, mechanics, gardeners, factory workers, and builders who regularly work with power tools and machinery will need to be shown how these things operate.
These are all steps to take in order to keep staff safe.
Protecting your staff
Injuries do happen, and it’s worth being aware of how common these are when considering how you protect your team. For instance, according to statistics from the Health and Safety Executive, there were 480,000 workers suffering from work-related musculoskeletal disorders (new or longstanding) in 2019/20. Protective gloves, stools, and supportive tools such as cushioned keyboards are all additions that can be made to care for your workforce and prevent talented team members missing work due to injuries or work-caused conditions.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) shields workers from potential hazards. When working on a safety strategy in your organisation, PPE is a good starting point.
When total costs of workplace self-reported injuries and ill health is £16.2 billion, it’s clear that as well as keeping people safe from harm, preventing accidents can also save money.
Take the time to regularly update your safety guide for your workplace. Be clear about the safety procedures in place and make sure that your team is trained up and protected.