The North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week is held every year during the first full week of May. The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) partners with the Canadian Society of Safety Professionals (CSSP) to raise public awareness about occupational safety, health and environment in an effort to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses.
Statistics show that every 99 minutes, a worker dies from a work-related injury. Workplace injuries are a significant risk for any business, and they definitely lead to such things as costly medical bills, lost productivity, possible large fines, and increased insurance premiums. Employers should always be looking for strategies to implement and improve upon to reduce the number of workplace injuries.
Here are just a few strategies to get you started:
• Regularly examine your workplace for ways to reduce the chance of injury
• Provide regular training to both managers and employees regarding risks for workplace injuries, including ways to reduce or avoid injuries, recognizing workplace risks, ways to mitigate those risks, and how to seek medical attention for you or your fellow employees – training should be done annually and during orientations
• Make sure you have administrative recommendations/requirements to help keep your employees safe, such as shift lengths, limiting overtime, scheduling more breaks, and rotating workers when jobs are physically taxing
• Develop and revisit policies that support good health, safety and injury management, such as the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and training on how to properly use it, workplace safety programs, return-to-work programs, and ergonomic workplace initiatives
NAOSH Week is a great time to revisit those policies, take a field trip around the workplace, chat with your team members on workplace safety ideas, and make a point to focus on ways to prevent workplace injuries and death. Check out Safety and Health Week website for more information and events to participate in.