How easy is it to create a hazard?

by on June 2, 2015 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: Workplace Safety Network

A safety expert recently had to break down some signage after a conference ended. Most people had just left the conference area in the hotel, but there were a few stragglers. One piece of equipment that needed disassembly was a 10 foot vinyl banner hanging from a boom, and during the work, the safety expert put the boom down, where it ended up crossing a walkway for a moment. Just long enough for one of the stragglers to nearly trip on it.

That’s how easy it is to create a trip hazard for others. It just takes a second, while focusing on a task, to create danger for someone else.

Since no one can pay attention at all times to all things, one way to stop these sudden hazards is for people to police each other. If everyone is watching out for hazards as they work, one is more likely to spot a hazard created by another.

Like most training, this requires repetition. Ask people to identify what hazards they have created in the past week, and what dangers others have created. (Make it clear they don’t have to ID others by name.) Rewards can be as easy as recognition in a toolbox talk, or for more serious “catches,” recognition by the team. The key is to get people watching out for each other, and rewarding those who do. That builds a culture where people watch out for one another.

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