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Am I Being Safe at this Very Moment?

On the average there are 10 accidental deaths and about 1000 disabling injuries every hour in the United States. In every instance the victim was somebody who did not plan or expect they would be hurt or killed.

In just a matter of seconds, your whole world could change.

It’s impossible to predict every single hazard you will encounter in a day since there is never a total absence of risks in our lives.  Risks are voluntary actions and can be managed by constantly asking ourselves: “Am I being safe at this very moment?”

Think about the job at hand and evaluate for hazardous conditions:

  • Check the weight of an item before trying to lift it.
  • Check the area above, below, and around you for protrusions to avoid bumping your head or other body parts.

Think before you act:

  • Do not hurry.
  • Don’t become careless.

Think Clean! Good housekeeping prevents many injuries:

  • Place tools back into proper storage when finished with them.
  • Remove trash and debris from walkways.
  • Clean up spills.

Think about driving more cautiously especially as inclement weather approaches:

  • Inspect your vehicle to make sure everything is in good working order.
  • Use your headlights to be SEEN by other drivers.
  • Use turn signals so others know your intentions.
  • Double check for traffic when your traffic light turns green. People run red lights!

Think about your coworkers’ safety:

  • Help a coworker to avoid an injury.
  • Point out unsafe behavior to coworker.
  • Have a “See it, Own it, Solve it.” attitude when it comes to safety issues.

Maintaining a Safe Environment is Everyone’s Responsibility

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, slips, trips, and falls account for the majority of general industry accidents. That adds up to a lot of injuries every year, and even some deaths.

In most workplaces a variety of slip, trip, and fall hazards can develop during the course of a workday or workweek. Loose flooring or carpeting, wet spots, uneven walking surfaces, clutter and electrical cords are just a few.  The most important thing to remember is to be observant of potential hazards.  While preventing these hazards seems obvious, the unfortunate truth is  those measures are often ignored.

Maintaining a safe environment is everyone’s responsibility.  Here are a few housekeeping tips to help you prevent slips, trips, and falls in your workplace:

  • Keep work areas clean and orderly.
  • Maintain aisles and other walkways.  Keep them clear of trip hazards, like cartons, stored materials, tools, etc.
  • Pick up fallen items from the floor.
  • Keep walking surfaces dry.
  • Post warning signs for wet floor areas.
  • Use non-slip footgear to decrease slip and fall hazards in areas that are frequently wet.
  • Report or clean up spills immediately.
  • Clean only one side of a passageway at a time.
  • Safely store scrap, debris, and waste, and promptly remove them from the work site.
  • Tape or anchor temporary electrical cords that cross aisles and post a warning sign.

Sources:

http://www.osha.gov/

Daily Safety Advisor

Wild ride for Teamster – IN A TOILET!

Washington state man gets the ride of his life – courtesy of a forklift.  ”It was one of those situations where it’s hard not to laugh,” said Todd Nelson, spokesman for Washington Closure Hanford.

Click HERE to read the full Story from the Tri-City Herold

Hazard Points

Working with machinery can pose many hazards due to the numerous constantly moving parts. Two of the hazards faced when working with machinery are pinch point injuries and crush point injuries.

Pinch points are where two or more parts move together and one of them is moving in a circle, such as a pulley and belt system.  Conveyors are one of the most common type of machinery that would pose this type of hazard.

Some simple rules to follow to avoid pinch point injuries are:

  • Don’t perform service on any conveyor until the motor disconnect is Locked Out
  • Keep clothing, fingers, hair, and other parts of the body away from conveyor
  • Don’t climb, step, sit or ride on conveyor at any time
  • Don’t load the conveyor outside of the design limits
  • Know the location and function of all stop/start controls
  • Keep all stopping/starting control devices free from obstructions


Crush points
are where two components move toward each other, like on a three-point hitch or hydraulic cylinder.

Some simple rules to follow to avoid crush point injuries are:

  • Watch for crush Hazard between Mast and Cowl of forklift
  • Secure the hood of any equipment to keep it from falling on your hand or crushing your fingers
  • Also, be cautious when handling heavy parts such as tires or forks that can crush body parts

General safeguards that can prevent you from being a victim of a pinch or crush point accident include:

  • Awareness: Know where your hands are at all times to avoid hazardous areas.
  • Guards: Moving parts on machinery should be guarded to prevent any part of the worker’s body from contacting the machine’s moving parts.
  • Protective Gear: Wear appropriate PPE to avoid cuts, abrasions, punctures, burns etc.
  • Knowledge: It is your responsibility to read the warning signs posted on the equipment and follow all safety guidelines.

You CAN avoid pinch point and crush point injuries by continually asking yourself;  “Am I being ‘Safe in the Moment’ right now?”

More Health, Less Injuries

Good health can aid in reducing injuries. Flexibility and strength can prevent strains and sprains. Exercise can help you sleep better during the night so you’re more aware on the job. Choosing healthier foods can help you avoid that afternoon energy slump. You don’t have to diet, or start some exercise program- just try adding some activity and healthy switches into your routine.

Consider these healthy choices.

Walking: Walking is one of the most effective ways to improve your health. Mayo Clinic website is a great resource to learn more about health and the importance of walking. Among many benefits, a few of the top reasons to walk are:

  • decreased choleserol
  • decreased blood pressure
  • increased lung capacity
  • increased heart function
  • increased flexibility and muscle mass

Still not convinced? Walking an extra 20 minutes a day will burn off 7 pounds of body fat in a year without even dieting! No gym membership or diet plans involved.

Weight lifting: More muscle means a higher metabolism. Studies show that a pound of muscle burns between 30-50 calories per day; whereas a pound of fat only burns 2 calories per day. Increasing your muscle mass also improves the efficiency in which your body uses sugar (which decreases your odds of getting diabetes) and can decrease your blood pressure (a risk factor for strokes). For weight training 101, click here.

Fast Food: By now, everyone knows that eating fast food for lunch every day is not very healthy. The majority of fast food offered is very high in calories, fat, and sodium- all the unhealthy stuff! Interestingly, even though we are aware of these facts, we still choose to grab our work lunches from fast food establishments. Men’s Health Magazine offeres some  ”Eat This, Not That,” nutritional facts, but here are some of the best and worst choices we’ve found to help you out:

  • Worst Burger: Hardees Monster Burger, weighing in at 1420 calories and 108 grams of fat.
  • Better Burger: Burger King Whopper Jr. with 320 calories and 21 grams of fat.
  • Best Choice: Subway. A 6″ Subway Roast Beef has only 290 calories and 5 grams of fat.
  • Worst Chicken: Dairy Queen 6 piece chicken basket. It has 1270 calories and 67 grams of fat.
  • Better Chicken: Wendy’s 5 piece chicken nuggest with 230 calories and 15 grams of fat.
  • Best Choice: Subway. Subway’s oven roasted chicken breast sandwich with a measly 310 calories and 5 grams of fat.

Sometimes, a little awareness and forethought can help you, your waistline and your overall health.

To view a complete list of Subway’s nutrition facts, click here. Subscribe to our blog and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to stay up to date on MH Equipment and industry news!

Be Safe in the Moment – Trash Safety!

Emptying the trash is a common occurrence at work. We want to empty it on a regular basis so it doesn’t overflow onto the floor or block aisles. Glance to see if anything looks like it doesn’t belong in the trash. Something may have fallen or been put in accidentally. Be cautious when reaching into the trash because it may contain sharp objects. Please read through the list of other safety tips when dealing with trash.

WHAT TO WEAR

  • Wear gloves, either disposable or leather. Gloves will help protect you from sticky goo as well as bacteria, mold and such. If leather, they will help protect from punctures and cuts. If wearing disposable, and they seem to tear easily, you can double glove – take one pair that fits and then cover them with a pair one size larger.

TRASH HANDLING

  • When picking up bags, bend your knees slightly
  • Bags leaking fluids or in danger of bursting, etc. should be double bagged.
  • Use a dolly when moving barrels to save the bending and twisting. Chock open doors ahead of time to make passage safe.
  • Be sure to pay attention to your surroundings so that you don’t trip, run into objects, or get hit by doors.

AT THE DUMPSTER

  • Make sure the lids of top loading dumpsters are securely propped open before attempting to loadtrash bags. It is very hard on your back to try to lift a trash bag and hold open a dumpster lid at the same time.
  • Be careful handling dumpster lids in high winds. The wind can catch the lid and tear it out of your hands or slam it down on your hand unexpectedly.
  • Make sure your hands are out of the way when closing dumpster lids.
  • Don’t ever climb into the dumpster.
  • When throwing bags into the dumpster from a barrel or cart, don’t twist at the waist. Instead, move with your feet and change directions with your whole body.

Whenever handling trash, remember to use proper body mechanics and protect your back!

Discuss Good Driving Habits

As a part of being Safe in the Moment, it is important to evaluate how you drive on a regular basis. You need to be aware of how your mood or attitude can affect the way you drive and to be aware of potential driving habits that may be a nuisance to other drivers. Always be considerate in traffic to avoid accidents, injuries, or near misses.

These things may seem like common sense, but it’s the little things that can be so frustrating. Read through the list and see if you can come up with other items that could become a driving safety issue.

Things to consider:

• Do not drive with your left foot on the brake. Your brake lights are constantly on and drivers behind you can’t tell when you are serious about braking.

• Red lights are not a suggestion. Always look before entering an intersection in case someone is running through the red light which happens quite often.

• Stay alert and don’t totally trust your GPS. Sometimes they do not give much warning when to make a turn.

• Make well calculated lane changes and use your signal. Avoid crossing several lanes of traffic to exit. Anticipate the exit and change lanes well in advance.

• Make sure your lights, horn, wipers, etc. are working properly. If you are driving a rental or unfamiliar car, check the location of these items ahead of time.

• A red flashing stop light means stop. Be sure to stop at a red flashing light and do not enter the intersection until it is clear. It may not be a 4 way stop, but oncoming traffic may have a flashing yellow.

• Be aware of heavy traffic or construction and slow down.

• Maintain a constant speed and do not speed up when someone is trying to pass you.

• Limit distractions: cell phone, eating, drinking, GPS, etc.

Remember to Be Safe in the Moment and practice good driving habits!

 

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Don’t Hurry, Be Happy!

“It’s better to arrive late in this world than early in the next.” 

Hurrying is a common cause of injuries and one of the main reasons we forget to be Safe in the Moment. Hurrying is the reason we:

  • Break the speed limit driving to the safety meeting.
  • Run to the safety meeting.
  • We walk past spills on the floor, “somebody should clean that up”.
  • Trip climbing the stairs because we have an armful of donuts for the safety meeting.

 Whether at work or at home, it is hard to stop and take the time to do an activity safely unless we consider the possible outcome.

 For example:

  • Breaking the speed limit can lead to a wreck.
  • Running can cause you to land in the hospital.
  • Leaving spills uncontrolled can cause a co-worker to slip and fall.
  • Tripping and falling down the stairs can put you in a wheel chair the rest of your life

 We hurry when we are trying to catch up. Feeling rushed takes up space in your brain and can lead to a mistake. The control for this easily-but-seldom-dealt-with hazard is to slow down, think about what you are doing, and do it safe in this moment.

 The reality of hurrying through any job is that it leads to mistakes. Mistakes lead to injuries and an inferior product. 

Remember to Be Safe in the Moment – Don’t Hurry, Be Happy!

Prevent Fatigue!

Thousands of people each day feel the effects of fatigue while at work. Fatigue in the workplace is a genuine concern because  it can cause so many accidents to occur. 

What Are the Possible Causes of Fatigue?

Fatigue can be caused by a number of things. Below is a list of the most common causes for fatigue at work.

  1. Sleep Apnea is a condition that causes a persons breathing to be interupted while they are sleeping. This disruption will often cause the person to awake several times during the night. So their sleep cycle is constantly interupted.
  2. Caffeine can also cause fatigue. Drinking cofffee or soft drinks late at night could make it harder to fall asleep and get a full nights rest.
  3. Poor Exercise Routine can make a person feel fatigued. When your body is not fit there are hundreds of ways it can show. Fatigue is one of these symptoms.


How Does Fatigue Effect Your Ability To Work?

  • Impairs decision making
  • Slows your reaction time
  • Amplifies errors in judgement
  • Increases forgetfulness
  • Leads to more sick days
  • Reduces productivity


What Are The Symptoms of Fatigue At Work?

  • Headaches
  • Weakness
  • Muscle Pain
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Blurry vision
  • Short term memory loss
  • Poor hand-eye coordination
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability


Preventing Fatigue At Work

There are certain things you can do to help prevent fatigue at work. The list below will help you prevent any accidents from fatigue while you are at work.

  • Keep the lights turned on. Make sure the lights are on all the way. Dim lighting will increase your fatigue while a brightly lit room will help you stay alert.
  • Turn the heat down. A little chill in the room will work wonders to keep you awake. When youe body is warm it naturally begins to feel sleepy.
  • Get up and move around. Sitting in a chair or doing one task all day will make you feel even more tired than you already are.
  • Eat but don’t over eat. Some fresh fruit or a light snack will help boost your energy without giving you the groggy full feeling of a large meal.
  • Avoid drinking Caffeine. While it will make you awake and alert for a short time the effects are short lived. Once the caffeine and sugar have worn off you will crash and be even more tired than before.
  • If you have windows in your office that can be opened they should be. The fresh air and natural sunlight are great stimulants. They will instantly boost your mood and energy.


Always remember to Be Safe in the Moment – Prevent Fatigue!

Thank you Workplace Safety Experts for the Preventing Fatigue in the Workplace tips! http://workplacesafetyexperts.com/office-safety/preventing-fatigue-in-the-workplace/

Be Safe in the Moment!

It is important to be Safe in the Moment to avoid accidents and injuries. By following the safety tips below you can maintain a safe work environment.


Focus on the Task at hand
!

1. Set the stage:  Have all your tools set up in your work station so you do not have to continually go searching for them.

2. One task at a time:  Work on one item at a time and put everything else away. If you are working on a computer close all windows but the one you are working on.

3. Envision the outcome:  Picture the end result in your mind, and work your way back. What do you have to do, how you do it, and where you need to start.

4. Eliminate outside distractions:  Keep your workspace clean.

5. Be present:  Think about what you are doing and not the deadlines or the church picnic on the weekend.
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REMEMBER
Focus on being Safe in the Moment. Many accidents occur because of carelessness. By applying the principles above you can stay safe!