Training Workers To Safely Use Equipment
The best safety training in the world cannot overcome poorly designed or poorly maintained equipment and tools. If a piece of equipment is unsafe by design and the only option then appropriate steps must be taken to identify those potential hazards. An example, it that a worker can innocently place their hand and fingers under a vacuum beater bar to test its not being jammed. The danger is that they can lose a finger or nail or suffer burns from the fast moving brush and parts. Simply training workers to always (note I stress always) turn off and unplug a machine before trying to conduct any maintenance. The best case is for the worker to be trained to ask the supervisor or maintenance staff to check out the equipment or give them a replacement unit.
Another example is expecting a novice to understand how to operate a swing machine buffer (150-250 RPM) that requires understanding how the bottom pad spins and simply balancing it by a subtle movement of the handle. Many workers have been injured unnecessarily and property damage has been extensive over the years due to the negligence of a supervisor who assumed the person understood its safe operation.
Broken off ground plugs, taped over cuts in cords, failing to use floor signs on wet floors as well as reducing the possibility of slip/falls should be covered in effective safety training. Remember that safety training can pay for itself in avoidance of just one injury or accident. Please note the preceding is suggestive only since regulations will vary by government entity. It is highly recommended that reader consult with local SME (subject matter experts) on any safety related topic and use the preceding as a starting point. Go to www.osha.gov for more information or use a search engine for local and state regulations.
Your comments and questions are always welcome. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…
Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678.314.2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.