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How to Optimise Safety in a Manufacturing Facility

January 24, 2018

In any type of a manufacturing facility, regardless of its size or layout, safety is a major priority. Although nobody expects or plans to get hurt, we sometimes tend to disregard the safety protocols simply because they demand extra effort and time. However, the practice has shown that giving it special attention and taking timely precautions is a smart move in order to prevent any accidents or injuries.

Initial considerations

For a supervisor, inspecting the workplace safety during the day is an excellent way to show the employees that you genuinely care for their well-being. It will also boost their morale, increase productivity, and leave a positive impression on visitors and clients.

From a worker’s perspective, complying with the safety protocols is in everyone’s best interest, as it does not only protect the worker, but the co-workers as well. Here are several tips on how you can improve and optimise safety at your manufacturing facility.

Safety conditions and equipment

In order to keep your facility safe, workplace conditions must be up to the current safety standards and all equipment must be used correctly. If there is anything that can be potentially harmful to the employees, it must be immediately removed. Supervisors should be informed about it since they are legally obligated to ensure everyone’s safety.

In addition, attention should be equally paid to proper use of tools, machines, and equipment since their misuse is the most prevalent cause of injuries at work. All equipment must be regularly cleaned and inspected for safety. Another aspect that lowers the possibility of workplace injury is wearing protective clothing and safety gear.

Decluttered workspace and emergency exits

All emergency exits, equipment shutoff and working areas must be cleared of clutter that can block free passage and movement. A workspace that is cluttered with all kinds of tools, heavy objects, and equipment will lead to lack of space and freedom of movement, and obstructed exits will prevent safe escape in case of an emergency. Proper storage and regular cleaning will ensure that all work and exit areas remain safe and clear.

No slips and trips

As the second on the list of most frequent causes of non-fatal workplace injuries are slips and trips. Therefore, it’s vital to clear all aisles and clean all spills as preventive measures. As the floors are the basis of any building, you need to check if there are any holes, loose boards, protruding nails and various damages. Fix them, clean them, replace them or consider using an epoxy paint solution to add a protective coat to all kinds of flooring, be it wood, concrete or tile. It covers cracks and worn-out patches, as well as prevents moisture build-up and slips.

No fire hazards

Fire hazard is probably one of the most dangerous and feared safety issues, especially if you’re using combustible materials. If that is the case, make sure you only store the minimum quantity needed for work, and when they’re not in use, it’s imperative they are stored in dedicated storage areas and in proper containers. Furthermore, all flammable waste must be disposed of daily according to strict safety codes.

Trained workforce

A well-trained and informed workforce is less likely to put themselves in a dangerous situation. If you invest in safety courses, your workers will be more aware of the importance of using the equipment properly and taking care of themselves. For example, in order to avoid back injury, they should have adequate chairs for keeping their backs straight. Also, they will resort to using mechanical help whenever possible, such as a forklift, conveyor belt or a wheelbarrow. A professional and responsible supervisor will know that fatigue easily leads to loss of focus and lack of concentration in workers, so they should make sure workers get adequate and regular breaks.

Workplace safety is a highly important aspect of any business and it should be regarded with serious commitment and dedication. A safe work environment does not only ensure that all workers return safely home at the end of the day, but it is also highly beneficial to the business itself, as it reduces costs, increases workers’ loyalty and productivity and improves the quality of production.

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