This is Where to Start with Safety Part 2


The second step, after the big clean up which we covered in a previous article is to do some detailing work inside and outside – we want the place to look substantially different from the way it has been in the past.

First impressions of anyone visiting the organisation are important whether it is a prospective customer or an inspector from WorkSafe. The way the premises are presented, both inside and outside, is a direct reflection on top management and the organisation, and a scruffy and untidy workplace tells you a lot about the management and their attitude, not only to safety, but to the way they do business.

The following checklist can be used to identify what should be done, as a minimum:

  • Yellow lines: paint these on floors to designate areas to be kept clear, storage, work in progress, lay-down areas etc.
  • Exit signs: place above fire exit doors – high enough to be seen from across the room.
  • Fire extinguishers: mount on the wall (don’t use them as door stops) with the appropriate sign above them and the sign high enough to be seen from across the room or work area.
  • Fork Lifts: if you use forklifts, erect ‘Fork Lift Operating’ signs outside all exit/entrances through which they operate.
  • Grinders, drill presses etc: mark with ‘Eye Protection Must Be Worn’ signs.
  • Safety Notice board: if you have one make sure you display a copy of the safety policy, Resolution of Issues procedure, Emergency procedure, copy of the last Safety Committee minutes plus any other general safety information. Move the local lunch bar prices, cars for sale and union information to their own notice board. (Your notice board is one of the first places a WorkSafe WA inspector will look when they visit you, Why? – because it tells them a lot about how safety is being managed, or mismanaged.) If you haven’t got a dedicated safety notice board, consider getting one from OfficeWorks.
  • Oil Storage Areas: make sure it is bunded and access is easy. Use kitty litter (atapulgite) to soak up spills, but best of all stop the spills happening in the first place.

These are just a few ideas on how any firm can make itself look different and, of course, you will have ideas of your own.

Generally, people prefer to work in a clean, tidy and organised workplace so making it easy for them to do this is important. Once again, Management sets the standards and enforces them.

Bottom Line

  • The appearance and first impressions of how the organisation looks to a visitor is important – it’s a reflection of senior management’s attitude to its work and its employees.
  • Make changes, set standards and enforce them.
  • Don’t try to do it all at once – do it in stages

Call me now for a chat and further information – 0412 602 742


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