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Somehow I Manage: Workplace Safety Training Guide by Michael Scott

Posted by Joshua Fleishman on Thu, Nov 13, 2014 @ 10:01 AM

Chances are you don’t work at one of the top ten deadliest jobs, but that doesn’t mean you can brush off safety. Safety in an office setting is just as important as any other environment because the potential for injury can be just as great. Being struck by lightning at your desk may be improbable, but its not impossible. With that being said, lets look at some more common workplace injuries:

Lifting – If lifting isn’t part of your every day job, chances are you’re not going to be thinking of safety when it’s time to move the heavy printer from one room into another. Without proper awareness, you may just grab it and start moving, seriously damaging your back in the process.

Tendon Injury – Most office workers are at their computers for 8 hours a day, sitting in the same position and going through the same motions the entire time. This could cause tendon injury or carpal tunnel syndrome, leaving you unable to do much of anything. Take breaks to prevent muscle tightness. Get up and walk around, and don’t forget to stretch your fingers.

Stress – According to the American Institute of Stress, 80% of workers feel stress on the job. Increased stress leads to health problems and can even cause heart attacks. The NYPD even automatically classifies all employee heart attacks as “work related injuries.”

Toppling Objects – Do you work in a cluttered office? If so, you may be in more danger than you think. Workers will often dangerously overload shelves due to lack of space. It’s only a matter of time before that old fax machine falls off of its overcrowded bookshelf and onto someone’s head.

There are several things you can do to prevent office injuries, many of which are included below in an infographic provided by www.resultsyoudeserve.com. If you are also a fan of the NBC show "The Office", you probably know all about Michael Scott and his hilarious yet sometimes cringeworthy antics. You may also be familiar with the episode 'Safety Training' from season 3. This episode must have been a catalyst for this infographic about real office safety issues that companies everywhere need to be aware of. It’s presented from the perspective of Michael Scott and includes quotes and pictures from the show as well as plenty of educational information about the dangers of the workplace:

Click here for infographic

Infographic Credit: “Michael Scott’s Guide to Surviving Your 9-5” from Katherman Briggs & Greenberg.

Tags: safety training tips, workplace mental health, office safety, ergonomics, workplace safety, safety training topics

Safety Training, Not JUST Important in June!

Posted by Joshua Fleishman on Mon, Jun 16, 2014 @ 09:30 AM

In 1996, the National Safety Council (NSC) established June as National Safety Month tonational safety council increase awareness of key safety issues. The idea is to decrease the number of unintentional injuries and deaths. NSC is also aligned with government agencies, such as OSHA, to help strengthen the influence of compliance in workplace safety.

The 2014 theme for National Safety Month is “Safety: It takes all of us.” Each week of National Safety Month focuses on a specific safety venue: workplace, traffic, home, and community. For example, the 2014 safety issues are as follows:

Prevent prescription drug abuse

Prescription drug abuse is the intentional use of a medication without having a prescription for it. This also includes using prescription drugs in ways other than intended or prescribed. Prescription drug abuse has become a serious safety issue. As of 2013, it was the second most widespread drug issue in the United States.

Here are some tips to stay safe with your medications:

  1. health, safety, medicationKeep your meds in a secure place. Leaving them out in plain view can lead to theft.
  2. Keep track of your medicine. Know how many pills you have, and what they look like.
  3. Don’t share any medications.
  4. Dispose of your meds correctly.
    • Keep meds in original container.
    • Remove your information
    • For pills, add water/soda to dissolve them; for liquids, use cat litter or dirt.
    • Close and secure with duct tape.
    • The disguised & sealed container can now be thrown out with the normal trash.

Stop slips, trips, and falls

Some of the worst yet most common type of office injuries in the workplace, but they are also the easiest to correct.

Common causes of slips are:
  • wet or oily surfaces
  • occasional spills
  • weather hazards
  • loose, unanchored rugs or mats
  • flooring or other walking surfaces that do not have same degree of traction in all areas
Common causes of tripping are:
  • obstructed view
  • poor lighting
  • clutter in your way
  • wrinkled carpeting
  • uncovered cables
  • bottom drawers not being closed
  • uneven (steps, thresholds) walking surfaces
Before any other preventative measures should be taken, good housekeeping should practiced:
  • slips, trips, falls, safety, osha 10Clean all spills immediately
  • Mark spills and wet areas
  • Mop/sweep debris from floors
  • Remove obstacles from walkways and always keep them free of clutter
  • Secure mats, rugs and carpets that do not lay flat
  • Always close file cabinet or storage drawers
  • Cover cables that cross walkways
  • Keep working areas and walkways well lit
  • Replace used light bulbs and faulty switches
Falls are the second-leading cause of unintentional death in homes and communities, resulting in more than 25,000 fatalities in 2009. Slips, trip and fall injuries cost employers approximately $40,000 per incident.

Be aware of your surroundings

Contact with objects is the second leading cause of cases with days away from work. This includes:

  • Being struck against an object
  • Struck by an object 
  • Caught in an object or equipment
  • Caught in collapsing material

Here are some tips to help prevent injury from contact with objects:

  • Neatly store loose materials
  • Secure items that are stored at a height
  • Store heavy objects close to the floor
  • Open one filing cabinet drawer at a time to prevent a tip-over
  • Wear the proper PPE for your environment
  • Always walk behind moving equipment, if possible
  • Never obstruct your vision by overloading moving equipment
  • Only operate equipment that you are properly trained to use
  • Make sure all the safety devices on your equipment are in good working order before use
  • Use extra caution around corners and near doorways

Put an end to distracted driving

Driving while using a cell phone has been a part of our culture. What, to some, can be seen as a necessity, others realize how dangerous it really is. Whether its business or personal, we need to remind ourselves that this is a potentially life-altering activity. Here are some tips from the National Safety Council about how to break this bad habit.

  • national safety month, cell phone drivingSchedule calls for times when you will not be driving.
  • Tell other people not to call you when they know you are driving.
  • Plan your day ahead of time so you won’t need to use a cell phone while driving.
  • Change your voicemail greeting to something like: “Hi, you’ve reached (insert name). I’m either away from my phone or I’m driving. Please leave me a message.” You can also let callers know approximately what time you will be available again so they know when to expect to hear from you.
  • If a ringing phone is too tempting, get in the habit of silencing your phone before you start to drive, or lock it in the trunk or glove box.
  • Work with your coworkers and family members on breaking the habit and hold each other accountable.
  • Allow enough time during your commute for stops so you can pull over and park in a safe location to check email and voicemail messages.
  • Consider using call-blocking technology when you are driving.
  • Remember, hands-free devices don’t make you safer—while they allow for one more hand to be placed on the steering wheel, they do not reduce cognitive distraction to the brain.

Remember, accidents are preventable. There is almost always no reason for them other than a lack of training. Be sure to take an appropriate amount of time daily, weekly, monthly, annually to have safety meetings, training days, etc. If you are interested or have any questions regarding safety training or any question on frequency of training, contact STS.

Tags: osha training, safety training, june safety, safety training tips, national safety month