OSHA Safety Manuals | Safety Topics
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Temporary Heat Safety Temporary heating devices are a vital part of being able to work effectively in cold weather. They allow temperature-critical work to continue on schedule, and provide for more comfortable working conditions. However, as a result of poor selection and careless use of portable heaters, injuries and damaging fires occur every year. If improperly used, temporary heating equipment can lead to burns, fires, explosion, carbon monoxide poisoning, and the creation of oxygen deficient atmospheres. So, with the winter season upon us, it's important to review the many types of temporary heating devices that are available, and be sure they are...

Accident Investigation Accidents are unplanned and unexpected events that cause injury, property damage, and/or financial loss in the workplace. Incidents or “near misses” don’t result in a loss, but have the potential to do so. Ideally, safety programs focus on preventing accidents and incidents, but if one occurs, have an accident investigation procedure ready and train your employees how to use it. Investigate ALL accidents and injuries; the severity determines the extent of the investigation. Handled properly, accident investigation helps you look at problems, solve them, improve your safety programs, and prevent future accidents. Accident investigation should prevent recurrence. Adhering strictly to fact-finding in a neutral, non-confrontational...

Safety & Security After Hours Last one out turn off the lights!" If only it were that simple. In today's work environments, whether it's a fixed facility or a temporary job site, after hours safety and security is an important responsibility that shouldn't be overlooked. This involves more than just turning out the lights. A good approach is to use a checklist, to ensure that everything is checked for safety and security. The list can be customized to suit your own operation, and may include the following: Perimeter Fencing and Gates Vehicles and Machinery Roof Top Access Dumpsters and Recycle Bins Area...

Respirator Program Respirators and a written respirator program are required by OSHA whenever air contaminants are above the Permissible Exposure Level. A respirator program should include the following elements: ___ Physician's examination to determine the worker's capability of wearing a respirator ___ Program implementation and annual re-evaluations ___ Written standard operating procedures for the selection and use of respirators ___ Fit testing ___ Purchase of respirators and/or filters for each atmospheric need ___ Purchase of cleaning materials, filters, pre-filters, canisters and spare parts ___ Documented employee training on respirator use and limitations ___ Equipment inspection, cleaning, maintenance and storage procedures and records ___ Work-area monitoring to establish degree of exposure...

Develop And "Sell" Your Safety Solutions The best ideas for improving the work environment often come from the people who are most affected by what happens in that environment-the workers. But how can employees effectively create solutions to their workplace safety problems, communicate their ideas for improvement to management, and have those ideas be seriously considered? Two tools are needed; a structured approach to solving problems and a way to submit formal suggestions. A Five-Step Approach to Solving Problems: Identify the Problem. Perhaps you already have a specific, perplexing safety problem in mind. It may be a piece of equipment or a...

Safe Operation Of Forklifts - Equipment Hazards Forklifts are a very important part of material handling in many industries. They are also a source of serious accidents. All personnel who operate forklifts must be trained and certified in safe operation at least once a year. The training includes both classroom and vehicle operation. Written and driving tests are administered by the instructor. Here are some basic safety rules to remember when operating a forklift. OPERATOR RESPONSIBILITY The operator is in charge of his/her own vehicle. As such they are responsible for their own safety, vehicle, load, company property and equipment and other...

Personal Protection Quiz Selecting Suitable Eye Protection Question 1: While using an abrasive grinder to dress some hand tools, your eyes will be sufficiently protected from flying particles if you wear a face shield. Answer: No. Face shields are not approved eye protection. They are designed to protect the facial skin from cuts and abrasions. They may be worn over approved primary eye protection for additional protection to the face. Question 2: One of your assigned job duties is to transfer a corrosive liquid chemical from one container to another. You wear safety glasses with side shields while performing this task. Are your eyes...

Back Care: You Can Make A Difference! "OUCH! Why did I try to lift that much weight on my own?" Did you ever ponder those words after you hoisted something heavy, or lifted from an awkward position? These incidents are well-known causes of back strain, but you might not have considered other "underlying" factors that lead to back injury. Several conditions influence your "back health." The cause of most back problems is poor posture, loss of flexibility, stressful living/working habits and above all, a general decline in physical fitness. Surprised? You shouldn't be. When you "let yourself go," (and most of us...

General Safety - "Take Two" Picture this scenario. You are walking through your operation and notice a puddle of oil on the floor. Hopefully, you recognize that this is a safety hazard and proceed to clean up the oil. Feeling that you have done all you can to prevent an accident from occurring, you return to your usual job. But did you really do everything you could have done to prevent an injury? How about if I told you that the next day your co-worker slips and falls on the same puddle of oil and injures his back? You may argue...

Scaffold Inspections Scaffolding is a temporary, field erected structure used for working aloft. Because it is temporary and field erected, it is subject to wear and abuse, improper assembly, and unauthorized changes. Construction standards require that a "competent person" inspect scaffolds for defects before every work shift. Yet, in all industries, every employee who works on or around scaffolding should be aware of safety requirements. The following list includes things to watch for: Scaffolding must be erected on firm footing capable of carrying the maximum intended load. Boxes, barrels, loose concrete blocks or brick must not be used to support the...