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When you arrive at work are you thinking about Safety?

As we roll into the work site parking stall, and think about our daily tasks and if there is time for a second cup of coffee, are thoughts around safety? Workplace safety is about preventing injury and illness to employees and volunteers in the workplace. Therefore, it’s about protecting the nonprofit’s most valuable asset: its workers.

SAFETY HAZARDS: These are the most common and will be present in most workplaces at one time or another. They include unsafe conditions that can cause injury, illness and death. Machinery-related hazards (lockout/tagout, boiler safety, forklifts, etc.) You have the right to be informed of known or foreseeable hazards in the workplace and to be provided with the information, instructions, training, and supervision necessary to protect your health and safety.

Think about this before you roll your eyes and think NO! You just parked, turn off the vehicle and ready to step out of your environment.  You have pocketed your keys, open the door and is first thought about surfaces regarding slips, trips and falls, icy or wet surfaces, cold and or unpleasant environment climates or proper PPE, layering and fitness for duty!  As you get out and successfully saunter across the parking lot or yard and reach for the door, are you thinking emergency response plans, points of egress or hazards that you may not be able to see like a gas leak or fire behind that door.  Or as you move past the entry way, and pull up to the staff table are you thinking about your DAILY Pre-Job Hazard Assessment sheet data and daily activities, what JSA, SOP or SWP you will need to review on the work assignment of the shift, never mind the ergonomic of just sitting down or using the office computer.

Oh yes that cup of coffee, are you considering hygiene, bio hazards on counters, or garbage control or OH SOMEONE BROUGHT SNACK, ok did everyone wash their hands before touching your piece, or allergies to product. As you can see the list is endless in safety so far long before you do any work or listen to the daily tool box meeting. Oh and yes the boss said we have to go some place other than hell to day did you check the roads, environment considerations and weather and cover all the thoughts in your journey management program long before you pop out to the company vehicle and do your PM ( Preventative Maintenance ) check and walk around. Never mind thinking things like;

  • The best drivers read the road ahead and anticipate potential hazards. Look out for upcoming bends, hidden dips, blind summits and concealed entrances.
  • Country roads often have sharp bends. To stay in control and give yourself time to react to unexpected hazards, brake before the bend, not in it.
  • Overgrown verges, bushes and trees on country roads can block your view and potentially obscure an oncoming hazard. Always drive at a speed which will allow you to stop in the distance you can see to be clear (double that on a single track road). Allow more time to stop on wet or slippery surfaces.
  • The speed limit is a limit not a target. The national speed limit on single carriage roads is 60mph, but there will be times you need to drive under that in order to drive correctly for the conditions. In fact most people do on these roads – the average free flow speed is 80 km per hour.
  • If you get stuck behind a slow moving vehicle be patient. Dips in roads, bends and other junctions joining your road often hide oncoming vehicles, so unless it’s absolutely safe, don’t overtake.
  • If passing more vulnerable road users such as horse riders, cyclists and walkers, pass wide and slow.
  • Even if you’re familiar with a country road, never take it for granted as the conditions can be different every time.

And for sure you were the one at the safety meeting or journey management talk who brought up that Brake before the bend, not on it, 59% of all fatalities occur on country roads. These roads often have sharp bends and blind bends which can hide unexpected hazards. Stay in control and give yourself time to react because you never know what’s around the corner.

Oh yes for sure stop and smell the roses and reflect and plan, “This is a good way to set the tone of the day,” he says. “Don’t allow yourself to be bum rushed by frantic co-workers lost in their own confusion. It’s not unusual to wake up to a long backlog of e-mails just screaming for your attention. The challenge is taking a moment for yourself before diving head first into your day.”

In pops that mentorship or lead by example picture you talk about and must consider.

1.   When working with chemical ghs and TDG products, you will be expected to always make safety the highest priority and read the instructions on the label for proper usage.

2.   You will be expected to perform work in a professional manner and complete assignments on time.

3.   You will be expected to accept job assignments willingly and perform them in a satisfactory manner.

4.   You are expected to familiarize yourself with the office procedures, rules and regulations and to be able to answer routine questions regarding the same.

5.   You will be expected to keep organized, neat, and accurate records.

6.   You will be expected to proofread all written or typed materials for errors and keep all publications for the office updated as needed.

7.   You will be expected to use your experience and training to complete your assignments in a satisfactory manner.

8.   You will be expected to pay attention to detail when completing assignments.

9.   You will be expected to keep up with current changes in laws related to your position.

10. You will be expected to type most documents with no typos or formatting errors.

11. You will be expected to check spelling on all documents before sending them out.

12. You will be expected to complete tasks as assigned.

13. You will be expected to work at a rate that is similar to teammates so teamwork goes smoothly.

14. You will be expected to develop an organized filing system that enables others to access necessary files in case of your absence.

15. You will be expected to prepare and process purchase requisitions and receiving reports timely.

16. You will be expected to establish, organize, and maintain all departmental files.

17. You will be expected to meet production standards for your position. (Be sure to list benchmarks related to the position).

18. You will be expected to ensure that routine office procedures (i.e. folders pulled, calendars created and distributed, folders filed, mail delivered and picked up, supplies kept current,  workers supervised) are completed on a daily basis.

19. You will be expected to observe Workplace policies.

20. You will be expected to account for all state funds and property which is assigned to you.

SAFETY DEPENDABILITY – Being where he/she should be doing what he/she is supposed to do.

1.   You will be expected to complete all work assignments by their deadlines except under unusual circumstances.

2.   You will be expected to spend a little extra time preparing for the job and then to perform the assigned task satisfactorily.

3.   You will be expected to notify your supervisor [or the timekeeper] if you cannot come in to work in accordance with departmental leave policy.

4.   You will be expected to keep accurate records necessary for expense reports, such as mileage, meals, and lodging.

5.   You will be expected to report to work at 7:45 a.m. and observe scheduled work and meal breaks.

6.   You will be expected to attend scheduled meetings and arrive for these meetings on time.

7.   You will be expected to call the Director if you must be late or absent according to departmental leave policy.

8.   You will be expected to not leave your office without making sure your phone is covered.

9.   You will be expected to reduce tardiness and report to work on time.

10. You will be expected to be at your duty station and perform your duties at all times except during official breaks.

11. You must not leave your assigned work area without permission.

12. You will be expected to use sick leave only for your own personal illness.

13. You will be expected to have your employee I.D./time card when you report to work.

14. You will be expected to report for duty wearing your assigned uniform.

15. You must refrain from loafing, roaming, loitering, or leaving your workstation without proper notification.

16. You will be expected to request leave in advance at times that do not hinder office operation.

17. You will be expected to perform office security procedures before leaving at the end of the day.

18. You will be expected to reduce your absenteeism rate.

COOPERATIVENESS AND MENTORSHIP  – Working with people.

1.   You will be expected to be more friendly while performing your daily tasks.

2.   You will be expected to refrain from gossiping with other employees.

3.   You will be expected to assist other areas of the office/department when your work has been completed.

4.   You will be expected to accept the tasks you are assigned without complaining.

5.   You will be expected to observe the Workplace smoking policy. Smoke only in approved areas and put your cigarette butts in ash trays/garbage. Do not throw them on the ground.

6.   You will be expected to work as a team member.

7.   You will be expected to contribute to the work group’s overall productivity as appropriate, helping coworkers when possible.

8.   You will be expected to show respect for others at all times.

9.   You will be expected to share your ideas with other employees.

10. You will be expected to be courteous to fellow employees, and contractors.

11. You will be expected to maintain a friendly, helpful, supportive and team-like atmosphere among coworkers.

12. You will be expected to follow instructions without complaining or arguing.

13. You will be expected to demonstrate respect for coworkers and supervisors (i.e., is not abrupt or rude, does not engage in workplace gossip or conflict, is not demeaning of others, etc.).

And yes All workers are entitled to work in environments where risks to their health and safety are properly controlled. Under health and safety law, the primary responsibility for this is down to employers. Employers have a duty to consult with their employees, or their representatives, on health and safety matters. That means speaking up when it is not right, you have the right to refuse to work if you have reasonable cause to believe that:

·        your workplace presents a danger to you;

·        the use or operation of a machine or apparatus presents a danger to you or to another employee; and

·        the performance of an activity constitutes a danger to you or to another employee.

In order for you to be protected by the Code when exercising your right to refuse to do dangerous work, you must follow the proper procedure.

Successful safety and health systems have the following in place:

  • Managers committed to making the program work.
  • Employees involved in the program.
  • A system to identify and control hazards.
  • Compliance with OH&S regulations.
  • Training on safe work practices.
  • Mutual respect, caring and open communication in a climate conducive to safety.
  • Continuous improvement .

Take a look at your safety and health system. Some components may be strong and others may need to be strengthened. The following sections describe these key factors and give ideas about how to make them part of your program.

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