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Recognising and Promoting Positive Safety Behaviour

Recognising and Promoting Positive Safety Behaviour

For employers there is a legal duty to provide a safe place of work for their employees wherever the place of work maybe. In these COVID-19 times this can and does in many cases mean remote working from home. Health and Safety requires all the stake holders to actively participate in safe work practice and to understand what is involved to create a safe place to work. Giving staff the information and tools to do this is a first step. When on-boarding staff, it is important to carry out a risk assessment that is personal to the employee and their role. Making sure they have the correct training, and any necessary certification is the next step and thereafter the employer needs to monitor compliance and performance.

 

Chair in Office

Office Ergonomics

 

An effective way of doing this is through an online solution that provides the records and training required. Having such a system that provides 24/7 access to information you can then go further to promote positive safety behaviour. By encouraging ongoing engagement with the core safety information and training you can see which employees are performing well and keeping engaged and up to date. You can incentivise staff to make sure they are aware of safe behaviour and you can encourage them to report unsafe issues that may arise.

It is true that a safe place of work is likely to be a more productive environment for the employee which all contributes to your bottom line. Promoting positive safety behaviour will reduce the risk of accidents and incidents and will reduce days lost to illness or accidents. It will also help you protect your company from the negative publicity and potential legal action arising from an accident in the workplace. Everyone in a working environment requires knowledge and training on safety behaviour and how to ensure a safe and healthy workplace. A desk bound job requires proper ergonomics and knowledge regarding breaks and what to do in an emergency. Even working in the home carries significant risks if a workstation is not correctly set up.

Our pattern and location of work is changing rapidly as a result of the pandemic and is likely to change permanently with a much larger degree of blended work where people attend the office on a part time basis. In this scenario it will become increasingly important to promote positive safety behaviour as the employer will have less control of the work environment while still being legally responsible for it. Even more reason to recognise and promote positive safety behaviour.

Myelearnsafety.com can provide more information on this topic as well as providing a solution to safety training and compliance monitoring. We would be delighted to hear from you with any of your concerns or problems.

Article  by Vincent Traynor

Please feel free to contact Cormac on 01 278 1938 or cormac@elearn.ie,  if you would like to discuss your health and safety needs further,  or take advantage of a complimentary course.

Construction Site Safety Best Practices

Construction Site Safety

Assess the risks

Slip, trips and falls

According to OSHA, falls are the leading cause of death in construction. Think about the exposed high-rise buildings or buildings with scaffolding around them. Even falls from ladders cause a significant amount of on-the-job industries. Injuries occur when workers do not install scaffolds securely or use ladders incorrectly which is the leading cause of accidents.

 

Hazardous materials/ Chemicals

A concerning rising safety hazard in the construction industry is the mishandling and misuse of hazardous materials.

The use of hazardous materials and chemicals is commonly identified as a key hazard in manufacturing industries but can often be overlooked in construction. Perhaps unknowingly, construction workers are handling, using and emitting hazardous materials every day on site.

Access all hazardous materials and Chemicals that will be on the construction site before the work begins and make sure the workers know the safety procedures around them.  For more information on how you can educate your employees on hazardous materials and chemicals please click here.

 

Electrocution

Electricity is one of the great inventions of the past century, but there’s no getting around the fact that it can be extremely dangerous if it’s not handled properly. Any construction site has the potential to expose construction workers to electricity. Many tools and pieces of equipment require electricity to operate. This is why it’s so critical for any type of construction worker to receive appropriate safety training for the use of electricity on a job site.

It’s also important for construction workers to have access to appropriate safety gear and equipment if they are required to work with or around electricity.

 

Heavy and/or powerful tools

The greatest hazards posed by hand tools result from misuse and improper maintenance. The employer is responsible for the safe condition of tools and equipment used by employees. Employers shall not issue or permit the use of unsafe hand tools. Employees should be trained in the proper use and handling of tools and equipment.

These tools also often cause hand-arm vibration. According to the HSE; By law, as an employer, you must assess and identify measures to eliminate or reduce risks from exposure to hand-arm vibration so that you can protect your employees from risks to their health.

 

Mental Heath

Dermot Carey, Director Safety and Training, Construction Industry Federation (CIF) said;

“Research shows that 10 people a week in Ireland take their own lives – 8 out of these ten are men. The construction sector is 96% male. We know from feedback we have received that workers in the construction sector are part of these statistics. As an industry we have focussed a lot of our effort in the past at managing safety issues – recently we have realised that we need to give time to managing people’s wellbeing…. the slogan for the day is “ Mind Your Head”. 

For more information on how you can educate your employees on Mental Health please click here.

 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

The fundamental principle is that personal protective equipment (PPE) should only be used as a last resort. The safety and health of employees must be first safeguarded by measures to eliminate workplace risks at source, through technical or organisational means (e.g by substituting hazardous chemical ) or by providing protection on a collective basis (e.g providing scaffolding instead of harnesses).

The employer has to make an assessment of the hazards in the workplace in order to identify the correct type of PPE to be provided and to ensure that PPE is appropriate to the risk. Care must be taken in selecting PPE as certain types give reasonably high levels of protection while others,  that may appear almost the same, give relatively low levels of protection. Source – Health and Safety Authority

 

If you would any further information on how you can be more safe or have questions please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us either by mailing Shane@elearn.ie or calling Tel +353 1 693 1421.

Construction: The 10 Most Common Health and Safety Risks

We at My Elearn Safety are always looking to share valuable information with our followers. The UK company Papertrail have written a very informative blog on the 10 Most Common Health and Safety Risks in Construction.

Health and Safety Risks

Accident fatality rates in the construction industry are double that of the sector average, with rates of minor accidents almost incalculably more.

In such an ever-changing working environment this is hardly surprising. But many employers are still unaware of their duty of care to employees, visitors, and even those not directly related to their activities.

We’ve compiled a list of the top 10 most common risks associated with working on a typical construction site, and highlighted the steps you can take today to effectively manage those risks. Read on to find out more.

Working at Heights

The construction and/or demolition of buildings frequently requires tradesmen to work at height. In 2014, falls from height were the most common cause of construction site fatalities, accounting for nearly three in ten fatal injuries to workers.

The risks associated with working at height are often increased by added access and mobility restrictions. Training, including safety awareness training, is essential for employees required to work at height.

Clearly, working at height should be treated with added caution, so be sure to follow these guides from the HSE:

 

…The blog goes on to include some of the following risks and also some risks you wouldn’t think of;

and more, to continue reading this blog please click here. 

Have a look at our Construction Health and Safety Courses here. 

Working at heights can kill you

How working at heights can seriously harm you

If you are in a job where you have to take risks and are working at heights, it is imperative that you are protected. It is your employer’s duty of care but it is also your responsibility too. Your employer needs to make sure that there are certain safety procedures and protocol in place.  To adhere and comply with health and safety regulation.

It is also up to you to be safe and make sure your colleagues are too. Risk assessments needs to be carried out in every place of work in every sector.

There have been many deaths due to falls and collapses in Ireland with 21 of the overall total falls from heights in farming.

There are many work procedures for working at heights and here are some:

Requirements for employers

The Work at Height Regulations require employers to ensure that:

It should include a careful examination of what harm could be caused from working at height with a view to taking the effective steps to reduce the likelihood of this harm occurring, either through avoiding the activity or, where this is not reasonably practicable, by carrying it out in a safe manner using work equipment that is appropriate to the task and the level of risk.

If you want to know more about risk assessment to decide the best, take our working at heights online course. We will be able to help you to plan and organise, give you the correct legislation and safe work procedures using a ladder, MEWP and work platforms.