There are a lot of things you have to think about when you go to work every day. You have to think about current and future projects, as well as deadlines, promotions, and more. With so much to think about already, the last thing on your mind is safety.
However, your safety is more important than anything else you do at work.
Whether you work in a warehouse or you sit at a desk inside an office every day, there are things you can do to make sure you and your coworkers are safer while you’re on the clock.
Never Take Driving Your Car for Granted
Many people get to work by driving a car. There’s no question that it’s convenient. You can leave on your own time, and it gives you a chance to run errands and drop the kids off at school.
The trouble is, as you drive the same route day after day, you’re likely to pay less attention to the road. The more comfortable you get behind the wheel, the more likely you are to find yourself as part of the 2.35 million people who become injured or disabled in an accident every year. You’re even more likely to find yourself in an accident if you drive for work throughout the day.
One of the best things you can do to keep yourself safe when going to work is to never take driving your car for granted. Always turn 100 percent of your attention to the road. That means not using your cell phone, taking different routes to and from work to stay alert, and finding a different way to get to work if you didn’t get enough sleep.
Keep Your Work Environment Neat and Tidy
Most people don’t spend a lot of time thinking about housekeeping at work, as there are seemingly more important things to think about. However, it can have a huge impact on your safety.
Just a few housekeeping things you should do on a regular basis at work include:
- Keep clutter away from fire and emergency exits.
- Avoid over-stacking boxes near sprinklers and sensor systems.
- Wipe up spills so they don’t create a tripping hazard.
- Don’t overcrowd storage areas and make sure they are properly lit.
Rethink Electrical Cords
Most business operations use plenty of power. Unfortunately, there aren’t always enough electrical outlets to go around, and many of those outlets are in inconvenient places. An easy solution is to use extension cords, but using these can create serious safety hazards over time.
Not only can they create an electrical hazard, but they can also create a tripping hazard. Install proper electrical outlets and use power strips that can handle the electrical wattage being used.
If installing new outlets isn’t an option at the moment, make sure you’re using heavy-gauge cords, and unplug them at the end of the day when they are no longer being used.
Have a Policy for Visitors
Making work safer means more than keeping your cubicle tidy and being safe behind the wheel. Unfortunately, outside threats are also a reality in today’s world, which is why it’s so important to have a policy for visitors.
No visitor should be allowed into the building without first visiting with the receptionist. After they have checked in, they should be escorted through the building by another employee, or if they’re visiting someone else, that employee should come and meet them at the desk.
You should also have a policy in place for unwelcome visitors. Make sure everyone knows how to handle the situation before it occurs so the threat can be taken care of smoothly.
Create a Culture That Doesn’t Allow for Workplace Violence
Physical violence isn’t something most workers have to consider, but mental and emotional violence are surprisingly common. From verbal abuse from superiors to sexual harassment and bullying, it’s important to consider the mental and emotional environment where you work.
As a supervisor, it means setting an example and stopping these kinds of abuse as soon as they occur. As an employee, it means going to human resources immediately whenever you or someone else in the workplace is suffering as a result of someone else’s behavior.
Work isn’t always the first place we want to be, but it should be a place we feel safe to get our job done. From simple tripping hazards to electrical dangers and mental health issues, the tips on this list will help ensure you and everyone working around you is as safe as possible all day long.