Basic Work Place Safety Tips To Prevent Injury or Fatality

Though most people take the issue lightly, workplace safety is quite important. Any number of accidents can happen if one is not careful. This may result in painful surgeries and long recovery periods. The importance of safety in the workplace cannot be overstated. It is crucial that each and every employee, regardless of where they work, remember these essential safety tips in the workplace.

Safety with Ladders

The statistics regarding ladder-related falls and accidents are quite astounding. Every year, in the United States alone, thousands of employees are rushed into the emergency room having suffered serious back and spinal related injuries. To prevent this, proper measures must be taken. Employees should be taught how to prop and use the ladder properly. Moreover, a protective circle should be provided round the ladder to prevent anyone from bumping into it.

Electrical Safety

Managers should ensure that their employees are well aware of the importance of electrical safety. Electrical safety is one of the most important safety tips in the workplace. Often, inexperienced employees may attempt to change fuses in the fuse box and get a really bad shock as a result. Such appliances should be left to the experience electrician. Moreover, employees should be enlightened on the dangers of water and these electrical appliances. Though it is a well known fact, that electricity and water do not mix, some people may cause accidents out of plain carelessness.

Biohazard Signs

If your place of work is in a laboratory or hospital there are many different hazard signs posted all over. These are there to help protect both employees and users of these facilities against the spreading of bacteria and viruses. It is extremely important to pay close attention to each and every sign you encounter in any of these places.

These Biohazard labels and signs help warn and protect against deadly and often hidden hazards.

- Place biohazard signs on containers containing hazardous material or containers for storing harzardous items (for example, any type of storage containers, waste bags, waste containers, bags containing evidence, freezers or refrigerators containing harzardous materials) that might contain organisms that can cause diseases or toxin.

- Biohazard signs assist in preventing workers from placing drinks or food in refrigerators, countertops or anywhere where potentially infectious substances could be present such as blood.

- Biohazard Signs should be placed on doors where biohazards materials are contained which will warn both visitors as well as workers of impending danger.

Enlightening Employees on Safety Tips in the Workplace

As stated, it is the responsibility of any manager to ensure that their employees are responsible for their own lives by knowing the basic safety tips in the workplace. This is best implemented through having scheduled safety talks with the employees so as to ensure everyone is in the know regarding electrical and other safety issues.

Stay Safe Having Safety Knives Within the Workplace

Safety knives can considerably lessen the risks of injuries through cuts which are commonly triggered with a conventional knife sliding throughout the cutting action. Most injuries will be to the fingers, hands and arms.

It’s fair to express that safety knives haven’t been cordially welcomed within the place of work with customers thinking that cutting performance is jeopardized. However, technology certainly moved on when it comes to safety knife design and development, and fortunately, this really is being a view of the past. But regardless of this, you will find still individuals who continue using open bladed knives for manual cutting procedures, not just a risk to themselves, but additionally, potentially to others nearby.

You will get safety knives, the type having a ‘concealed’ edge, to ensure that there’s no possibility of accidentally stabbing anybody (including yourself) by using it. Prison officials carry these on their belt pouch and utilize them for cutting down individuals who hang themselves, hopefully before they die.

Some safety knives possess a finger-safe gap and blade casing to safeguard the consumer from having direct contact with the sharp edge. Others might have a auto-retracting blade (usually much more of a utility type of knife) – the edge simply springs back once it’s removed from the material it’s cutting.

Before buying knives, you should conduct a complete risk assessment and knife audit. Safety knives vary greatly in design and performance. Direct communication with other people in the various locations/departments within the place of work is the initial step in evaluating precise needs of these types of knives. Then precisely listing the particular materials (for example card board, shrink wrapping, plastic strapping, netting) which are regularly handled in each area. For example, not every safety knife will cut cardboard well, so it’s worth going through each special option that comes with each knife design. A knife that works well is going to be far better received through the user, and goes along way to produce a safe knife culture within the place of work.

Certain conditions, such as with the food packaging industry, have very specific needs for safety knives. Some insist upon a knife being 100% metal detectable and can be completely clean within an autoclave, while some prefer a disposable knife to prevent the chance of mix-contamination.

There’s also the opportunity for conventional knives and blades to quite literally ‘fall in to the wrong hands’ especially when they are taken off their workplace. Safety knives once again, reduces the opportunity of accidental injuries along with the rather more serious problem of knife crime.

Stranger Safety

Stranger safety is a term I’m sure you’ve heard before. As a parent, you know how important it is to protect your children. But what’s the best way to teach kids to be safe around strangers? Telling kids “Don’t talk to strangers” can be confusing to a child. Kids don’t inherently understand the word “stranger”. If you’re looking for an easy way to teach the children in your life stranger safety, I’m here to help!

I will give you simple steps to follow when discussing stranger safety with your kids. Don’t be afraid to have this conversation with your children. Many parents avoid the topic because they feel it will frighten their children. Just think about that for a minute. Wouldn’t you rather talk about stranger safety with your kids and prepare them? Arm your children with the knowledge they need to stay safe. There’s no better time than the present to have this talk with your kids. Get started today!

The Easy Way to Discuss Stranger Safety

Kids get confused when you simply say “Don’t talk to strangers”. Here’s a better way to explain it to your children. Let’s break out of the “stranger” term and give kids a better way to know who’s safe and who’s not safe. Below I will give you 3 terms you can introduce to your kids. For simplicity’s sake, there are only 3 types of people your child will ever encounter.

The 3 Types of People Your Child Will Encounter

Introduce the terms below to your kids. You will be amazed at how quickly they understand and feel comfortable with this type of stranger safety education. In the next section I will go into further detail about these groups of people and how to discuss this with your kids.

1. Safe Adults: You will choose THREE PEOPLE to be your child’s “safe adults”. A “safe adult” is someone your child can always trust to go with or talk to. I will go into more detail in the next section.

2. Don’t Know:A person your child has never met before.

3. Kinda Know: Someone your child has met before, or even someone they may know. “Kinda knows” are not “safe adults”. This could be someone like: a neighbor, a soccer coach or even a parent’s friend.

Safe Adults

This is one of the most important ground rules to set with your children. Sit down as a family and name 3 people who will be your child’s “Safe Adults”. In my family my husband and I are a given. We are “Safe Adults” to our children. They understand that. We also named my two parents (Grandma & Daddoo) and my husband’s mother (Oma) as our children’s safe side Adults. It’s up to you to decide who will be your children’s safe adults. Who do you trust 100% with your kids?

Basically, a “Safe Adult” is someone your child can ALWAYS trust to go with or talk to. If you’re ever unable to get your child from school, a sporting event, etc.. you would trust these people to get your child in your absence. If your kids have 3 “Safe Adults” then they will know it’s safe to go with these people. This is important because child predators often lie to children and manipulate them to leave with them. I will go into this more when I discuss “Don’t Knows” and “Kinda Knows”.

Don’t Knows

A “Don’t know” would fit into the “stranger” as we know it category. A “Don’t Know” is someone your child has never seen or met before. It’s important to explain to your child that you can’t tell if someone is nice or not just by looking at them. If your child has never met someone before that person is considered a “Don’t Know”. It’s always the safest thing for a child to get to their “Safe Adult” as quickly as possible if a “Don’t Know” tries to talk to them or get them to leave with them.

Explain these things to your children:

• NEVER talk to a “Don’t Know” if he/she isn’t with a “Safe Adult”

• It’s NEVER OKAY to leave with a “Don’t Know”.

• A “Don’t Know” should never ask a child for help. Some “Don’t Knows” may lie or try to trick children by offering them candy, gifts or by asking children for help. Tell your children if a “Don’t Know” is asking for help or offering them something, they should run and tell their “Safe Adult” right away.

• If a “Don’t Know” tries to grab your child or take them out of the store or area, your child should YELL: “HELP! THIS ISN’T MY MOM!” or “HELP! THIS ISN’T MY DAD!” Your child should fight to get away while yelling this over and over again. Then your child should run away and find a “Safe Adult” right away.

I have seen some kids get confused about stranger safety and refuse to talk to the grocery clerk at the checkout line when they have a “Safe Adult” by their side. You can explain to your children that they are safe when in the company of a “Safe Adult” and they can feel comfortable talking to other adults in the company of a “Safe Adult”.

Kinda Knows

A “Kinda Know” is someone your child has met before, but is not a “Safe Adult”. This is often where stranger safety education leaves a gaping hole. The scary thing about child abductions is that many times the crime is committed by someone the child has met before: a family friend, a parent’s co-worker, a sports coach, etc.. It’s important to discuss this aspect of stranger safety with your kids.

This is where your list comes in handy. Did you write down the 3 “Safe Adults” you chose for your kids? You certainly should! Explain to your kids that if someone is not on their “Safe Adult” list they are considered “Kinda Knows”. Even Aunts and Uncles, neighbors, coaches, etc.. would be considered “Kinda Knows”. It’s important that you talk about this regularly with your kids. I will also tell you about a fun, educational video you can have your children watch regularly to refresh their memory as well.

Quiz Your Kids

Once you have discussed the three categories of people with your kids and made your list of “Safe Adults” you can quiz your kids. As I mentioned my kids have grandparents as their 3 “Safe Adults”: Grandma, Daddoo and Oma. So, below are a couple sample questions I would ask my children.

1. If you were at the playground or outside school and your football coach came up and said “Your Mom’s in the hospital and told me to come pick you up, come on we should go check on her now”. Would it be okay to leave with him? What would you do?

- My kids should know it’s not okay to leave with their football coach. Even though they have met him before, he is still a “Kinda Know” and not a “Safe Adult”. We agreed that I would only send “Safe Adults” in my place if I can’t be there to get them for any reason.

- They should recognize that this is a trick. Just like “Don’t Knows” “Kinda Knows” may lie to get children to leave with them.

2. If we went to Wal-mart and you were looking at toys while Mommy was a few aisles over and a “Don’t Know” came up and offered to buy you the toy you were looking at. Is it okay to go with that person?

- My kids should know it’s not okay to go anywhere with a “Don’t Know”. No matter what the “Don’t Know” is offering them.

- They should immediately get away from the “Don’t Know” and find me. I will also give a couple other great tips about who a child can go to when confronted with a situation like this.

Other Great Tips
By now you and your kids should have a pretty good idea of how to handle different situations. But, what if your child gets lost in a store? Panic might set in if they can’t find you and are surrounded by a bunch of “Don’t Knows”. There are a few things you can explain to a child to help them if ever faced with a similar situation.

• If your child is lost in a store, they can go to someone who works there and ask for help. Most large stores have an overhead paging system. Make sure your child knows his/her full name and your full name. It’s also a good idea to teach kids your phone number and address.

• If your child is lost at an event or other area where they cannot find an employee, the safest thing to do is find a mother with children and ask them for help. Be sure your child understands that they should never leave the store or event with this mother. This person should just help them find an employee who can assist.

Conclusion

Teaching children about stranger safety is so important. Having these discussions with your kids may just save their lives one day. It’s a scary world we live in. Don’t be afraid to have these talks with your kids. Protect them by empowering them to keep themselves safe. We can’t be with our kids 24/7, sometimes they are without us.

If your kids know what to do when faced with a potentially dangerous situation they will come back to you safe and sound.

The best educational video I have found for educating kids about stranger safety is “The Safe Side”. This video was created by John Walsh (America’s Most Wanted) and Julie Clark (creator of Baby Einstein). It teaches kids stranger safety in a fun and engaging way. The video is not scary, it’s actually hilarious at times. The main character in the video is “Safe Side Super Chick”. You will fall in love with this zany character. My kids adore this video. They have probably watched it 25 times and beg to watch it again and again. I recommend having your kids watch this video at least once a month to refresh their memory.

Data Center Safety Tips: Including Personal Protection Equipment

A recent survey conducted by ServerLift found that over 75% of respondents that install rack-mounted equipment that weighs 50 pounds or more do so manually, without the aid of lifting equipment. OSHA states that lifting loads heavier than 50 pounds will increase the risk of injury, suggesting that you use equipment or two or more people to lift the load.

Even though a data center appears to be a quiet, safe, unassuming environment there is safety risks all about. Electrical circuits, acids, gases, flammable materials, and fuels are just some of the areas that represent potential safety hazards.

Poor safety can lead to accidental injury and even death. Lost wages, lost productivity, medical expenses and administrative expenses. Where an injury can cost a company tens of thousands of dollars, a workplace death could cost in the millions. As great as these costs are, the cost to an organizations reputation and lost revenue due to equipment shutdown can be even greater.

Training
• Require all personnel working in the data center to attend certified safety classes. New employees must be trained or accompanied by trained personnel before they are left to work on their own. Keep a log to ensure no one slips through the cracks. Classes should be repeated on an annual basis to ensure everyone is current on safety procedures. Have a safety designated person do random walk through tours to check all programs and PPE and insulated tools are being utilized.
• Facility personnel need to have proper electrical safety training classes. If your company doesn’t have someone in charge of safety hire an outside firm certified to conduct safety training classes.
• It never hurts to observe employees as they do their jobs to ensure that they are performing tasks as per their training and your specifications.
• Emergency preparedness comes in many forms, fire drills, disaster recovery, and power outages. It is good practice to perform drills periodically to make sure everyone knows what to do in case of an emergency.

Data Center (Computer Room) Safety
• ALL flow alarms and fire detection should be tested on a monthly basis.
• OSHA requires any floor hole that could be walked into must have a standard railing or toe board surrounding it. Not covering hole cutouts in a raised floors while waiting for cables to be pulled when cabinets are installed could lead to a workplace injury. Using brushed grommets with integrated safety covers are very handy for concealing floor cutouts when dealing with expansion projects.
• Orange cones are perfect for marking off areas where floor tiles have been removed to provide access to raised floors.
• Always use a floor panel puller when lifting heavy floor panels.
• Make sure that server racks and cabinets are properly grounded and secured. Loading and unloading heavy equipment into unsecured racks and cabinets can lead to a tip-over hazard.
• If racks and cabinets are on castors, make sure the castors are rated for the weight that you are loading into them. Use of castors raises the enclosures center of gravity making it easier to tip.
• Strains and sprains from lifting and moving items are significant causes of workplace injury. Not lifting properly or not having proper equipment to assist personnel in lifting heavy equipment can lead to injury. With many servers weighting over 100 pounds, having proper lifting equipment is a must.
• Lack of proper fire detection and protection can cause a long-term downtime event and including loss of your entire facility.
• In larger facilities, not having floor layout diagrams posted within the site showing emergency exit locations where everyone can see them. Try using different colored floor tiles to mark the exit routes.
• Ample fire extinguishers throughout the raised floor area with signs identifying extinguisher locations placed high above the cabinets. Has your staff been trained in the different types and proper use of a fire extinguisher?
• Storing combustible material within the data center or inside server cabinets, why provide fuel to the ignition source.
• Hearing safety and sound abatement never seems to get much attention, but consider acoustical wall and ceiling materials or hearing protection to be used by personnel while in the data center for prolonged periods are easy solutions.
• Equipment placed too close to PDU/RPP/s and A/C equipment in violation of the NEC stated distances.
• Make sure all power feeds are labeled.
• Extension cords running from one piece of equipment to feed another. Especially if the cords are undersized to support the load they are feeding. Extension cords should only be plugged into maintenance outlets and be only used to power tools, vacuum cleaners and test equipment.

Data Center (Outside the Computer Room) Safety
• Battery rooms need hydrogen gas detection and exhaust fans for proper air exchange.
• Every battery room should have a combination eye wash/deluge shower station to provide a means of decontaminating personnel exposed to and contaminated by battery acid. These shower stations should have a water flow alarm hat is monitored in a remote station such as a guard desk or master control room that is occupied 24×7. If a person is exposed to battery acid they need to be able to enter the shower and stay in there for long enough to neutralize the acid without having to leave to call for help. The temperature of the deluge shower should be room temperature, too cold or too hot and the user will have trouble staying in for prolonged periods limiting its effectiveness.
• Keep a full first aid kit outside the data center in a staging room or the control room.

Staff & Personal Protection Equipment
• Full PPE equipment should be worn when working in energized electrical panels.
• No facilities personnel should be building, installing or removing power whips without the proper license.
• Each facility employee should be outfitted in their own PPE equipment. The PPE equipment must be inspected prior to each use.
• Proper clothing for working on live electrified equipment.
• Face shields.
• Gloves. The gloves need to be tested on an annual basis for voltage leaks by an authorized firm. If found to be bad they must be replaced.
• Insulated tool-kits designed to protect against electrical shock. I purchased insulated tool-kits for each facility employee, so there was never an excuse not to use the right equipment.
• Not using proper tools and PPE equipment when appropriate should have consequences including discipline and possibly termination.
• The need for a documented and standardized safety program for training personnel in data center safety issues. All new employees should be trained prior to being allowed to work alone within the data center, and classes should be repeated annually for all employees.
• If your data center is physically separate from the rest of your business, or other buildings. I’d recommend that you have someone familiar or trained in first aid on each shift.

Having written safety policies, procedures and work rules is essential, including step-by-step process/checklist for performing tasks safely from beginning to end. Make your employees accountable and part of the safety process and you’re more likely to have an accident free data center.

Make Your Office a Safe Place to Work With Office Safety Training

The safety of the workers in any office is one of the main responsibilities of the management. One of the best methods in ensuring safety in work places is by conducting a regular office safety training seminar.

The safety seminar would not be expensive, as in most cases they can be conducted free by the public and local authorities. The police department, as part of their public services, often conduct safety training and tips regularly. This is also part of the public safety awareness campaigns of the local fire station brigades. In large corporate offices, the Human Resources department would normally maintain an Occupational Safety Officer that usually conducts the training.

The safety seminars include actions to be taken when an incident occurs. In this part of the training, the trainer would normally emphasise the importance of proper first aid training. Employees are educated on the types of temporary medical assistance needed to help a victim, including the cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). CPR is the most common life saving technique that involves chest compression and mouth to mouth rescue breathing. The placement of emergency equipment to combat a situation, are also given importance in the lectures, and so does the use of the first aid kits.

Offices situated in high rise buildings are given fire drill training in order that they will be able to react quickly when a fire is noticed or when the fire alarm rings. Local government regulation and building codes also include provisions for fire drills. Workers in earthquake prone countries are also given a special earthquake and evacuation drill. Massive emergency and evacuation drills cannot succeed if the workers are not given safety training in small numbers.

One of the important elements of the safety seminar is the identification of the office hazards. Risk Managers and Safety Officers agree that when the hazards are eliminated, the office will be a safer working area.

Mechanical hazards include over filled filing cabinets that can tip over when not properly bolted to the floor. Overheating electrical equipment, such as photocopying machines and electric kettles, are also part of the hazard that requires to be rectified. The physical sources of danger include chairs that do not support, adequately, the backs of the workers, and improper glare control from the windows and computer video display units. Toxic vapours in the atmosphere are part of the chemical hazards in the office. These are mainly from the fumes caused by printers and copiers. Smoking in the office was then part of this danger, but local by-laws have eliminated it. Common electrical hazards in the office are caused by loose wires and the overloading of power chords. Air-conditioning units that are not regularly serviced are also included.

An office danger that is often neglected is the psychological hazard. Employees who work very long hours or are consistently pressured to do monotonous or repetitive work are prone to accidents. These hazards can be properly addressed during safety trainings.

The Occupational Health and Safety Acts of different countries have established the duties of the employers in relation to the health, safety and welfare of the employees. By regularly conducting office safety training, the environment in the office will be less dangerous and the workers will be more productive.