The first step to preventing harm and injury in the workplace is to increase health and safety awareness. Awareness is incredibly important in any workplace as threats are present everywhere regardless of the nature of the job. Health and safety awareness especially applies to office workplaces and workplaces with extreme hazards.
Regarding the former, office workers typically underestimate the threats that surround them on a daily basis – this attitude only increases the likelihood of injury. Regarding the latter, hazardous workplaces, such as construction worksites, are often littered with health and safety training and information signs and instructions.
The problem is that the human brain may block safety warnings and instructions out subconsciously over time, so it’s important to keep your safety knowledge fresh and up to date.
Why Health & Safety Awareness Is Important
It’s difficult to prevent a threat if you aren’t even aware of its existence. Health and safety awareness is more than being able to identify plainly obvious hazards, such as sticking your hand in a heavy piece of machinery while it’s on. It’s about being able to spot hazards before they are hazards.
For example, an unsuspecting metal can have GHS hazard stickers placed over it, indicating it’s a threat to human safety. An unsuspecting worker that lacks safety training may feel confident about using this can to prop a heavy door open. An educated worker, however, would recognize the threat and look for something else to use.
As previously mentioned, offices aren’t risk-free either. Depending on the circumstances, someone may interpret a coworker’s paperwork-cluttered desk as a sign of hard work and commitment to the job. In reality, clutter poses a massive health and safety risk. If an emergency happens and someone were to be impeded by the clutter pile, their life is placed at risk.
3 Safety Tips to Improve Your Workplace Safety Now
Don’t Take Shortcuts
Taking shortcuts is a sure way to decrease your health and safety awareness and increase your risk of injury. You miss out on a lot of subtle signs if you skip steps. For instance, if you skip out on reading the safety signs before entering a worksite, you won’t be aware of the fact that you need to wear steel-toed boots; thus placing yourself at high risk.
Read Government-Provided Safety Manuals
Unfortunately, it’s likely that the government-provided safety manuals given to your workplace are collecting dust pinned up on the lunchroom wall. Brush them off and thoroughly read them. These guides are stuffed with useful information – you’re certain to learn something new and increase your safety knowledge and awareness.
Your gut is typically right, especially if you have a baseline knowledge of health and safety awareness. Stop, look around, and deeply consider the things around you. Think outside the box – is there anything around that seems potentially threatening? Ask your supervisor to help you with this as they are likely more familiar with safety practices.
How Professionals Can Increase Health & Safety Awareness
Health and safety professionals should be your go-to solution for increasing awareness of risks in the workplace. Professionals, such as AdvancedCT, are MOL-approved, TSSA-accredited, and WSIB-approved trainers that are able to cover every topic in-depth and can answer any questions from the staff.
Reading manuals and speaking with supervisors are great ways to educate yourself, but these resources typically have blindspots that won’t be missed by a health and safety professional. Do yourself a favour and look into bringing a professional to your workplace today.
Health & Safety Awareness Experts – AdvancedCT
Improving your health and safety awareness is a necessary job for anyone, regardless of the nature of the workplace. Threats are often hidden in plain sight, meaning they are invisible to people who lack the awareness and skills to spot them.
Contact Advanced CT today if you’re interested in improving your health and safety awareness. We offer courses that teach people about WHIMIS/GHS hazards, fall protection, risks in confined spaces, and more. Don’t wait until it’s too late – contact us now to get started!