Martin Lloyd Sanders | Overlooked Workplace Safety Hazards
For Capt. Martin Lloyd Sanders, Director of Safety, Emergency, and Environmental Compliance for Federal Occupational Health, a lot of workplace injuries could have been prevented had the employer and employees taken the time to really pay attention to their surroundings. Often, when we are so used to our working environment, we do not notice health and safety risks that are staring us in the face; that is, until an accident happens, laments Martin Sanders.
Here are a few often overlooked safety hazards in the workplace as shared by Martin Lloyd Sanders:
1. Working from a height
Whether it’s repairing the roof or standing on a scaffold at a construction job, falling from a height is one of the leading causes of work-related injury. Sometimes, these falls lead to deaths. Here, Martin Lloyd Sanders reminds employers and employees alike that they must wear protective gear whenever they are working from a height. It doesn’t matter if it’s a quick job like patching up a roof or a long-term project like a building construction; everyone must wear protective gear, especially head protection, whenever they are working from a height. Image Source: Forge Resources Group
Wearing protective gear may seem like the “most natural thing to do” but you’d be surprised at how many employees or workers fail to follow this one simple safety measure, says Martin Lloyd Sanders.
2. Objects that may cause slip and fall accidents
Objects on the floor, exposed electrical wires or cables, and even cleaning supplies that aren’t properly kept are all accidents waiting to happen. People inside the office premises may trip on these wires, cables, and objects. Anything that obstructs pathways should be removed or kept properly, says Martin Sanders. It is also important to keep the office clean and organized at all times to prevent slip and fall accidents, suggests Martin Lloyd Sanders.
3. Improper storage
Everything in the office has its own place, but sometimes, items like equipment, supplies, and appliances are stored haphazardly. The pantry becomes a secondary storage space for office supplies or the electrical room becomes a storage space for appliances. First off, each room should be used for its specific designation only. Secondly, items should be stored properly to prevent accidents. Improper storage could mean the items and the storage room have become a fire risk, for instance.
4. Make sure that fire exits are accessible
Fire exits are sometimes blocked by objects or equipment or the door has become sticky and hard to open. According to a study conducted by the National Safety Council (NSC), blocked fire and emergency exits are among the most commonly overlooked safety hazards in the workplace in the country and around the world.
For everyone’s safety, remove all objects that are blocking the fire exit and make sure that the door is working properly, says Martin Lloyd Sanders. Check the stairs as well to make sure that the rails and rungs are still intact.
These safety hazards may or may not be present in your office, but it would be best to double-check just the same, suggests Martin Lloyd Sanders. Check for other safety hazards that you may have overlooked as well. Ask your employees to help identify health and safety risks in the workplace.