Four Factory Floor Checks For Better Health And Safety

May 1, 2013 by  
Filed under Business Law, Employment

Better Health and Safety

If you work on a factory floor then taking on the role of health and safety officer is a huge responsibility that shouldn’t be taken lightly. To do the job properly, you’ll need at least basic training that provides you with recognised health and safety qualifications. Once you’ve been trained you can keep abreast of any health and safety issues on your watch by performing these four checks on a regular basis.

1. Work Area Inspection

Make sure you know where to find the ‘kill switch’ on any machinery that is fully or partially automated. Look at the floor to check for any spills or debris that could present a hazard to staff or visitors and make sure no objects are left where they could become trapped in machinery.

Try to arrange the floor so that every workstation can be seen at one time and avoid blocking access around work stations where possible. Make sure you know where first aid kits and fire extinguishers are and can locate emergency exits in accordance with the company’s emergency procedure. Most of these checks can be performed periodically but it’s a good idea to set a schedule and stick to it so you don’t end up forgetting something.

Apple Group Risk Assessment for health and safety

2. Personal Safety Inspection

As a health and safety officer, you should always be aware of personal safety issues and ensure that other staff understand the importance of guarding their own and others personal safety by wearing the correct protective clothing, avoiding un-tucked shirts and loose sleeves, tying back long hair and wearing gloves, reflective clothing, helmets or protective goggles if necessary.

In the majority of factory floor environments it’s not advisable to allow distractions like iPods or smart phones on the work floor, so if that’s not the policy at your work place it’s worth considering making a change.

3. Machinery Inspection

If machinery on your factory floor is switched off and on, rather than working on a twenty four hour basis, it’s essential to check it every time work resumes. This should include assembly equipment, presses, machining equipment and forklift trucks.

Look for loose objects that could cause a jam or worn parts that may make the machinery dangerous. If necessary check the lubrication, hydraulic fluid and power supply prior to switching on. If machinery runs twenty four hours a day you’ll need to perform regular and ongoing checks.

4. Communication is Key

The key to becoming a great health and safety officer is communication. Being aware of and working to avoid health and safety issues is only half of the job, the real hard work starts when you have to get others on board too.

To create a safe and secure working environment, make sure you communicate with staff regularly to ensure that everyone is up to date with company policy and understand their own responsibilities. Staff can offer great advice about how to make procedures safer that you may not have spotted yourself so good communication could help make your current health and safety policy even better.

Comments are closed.