Occupational hygiene helps organizations prepare for several environmental contaminants, including biological, physical and chemical, that could impair the health or well-being of both workers and community members. Having smart occupational hygiene practices in place plays a huge role in improving your workers safety and in the development of a company-wide culture of safety.
If you need assistance implementing occupational hygiene practices, then the tips here should be beneficial. Being informed and utilizing proven methods is the best way to ensure your workforce remains safe and healthy.
1. Use the Available Risk Tools to Gather and then Prioritize Information
When you use occupational hygiene risk tools, you can form a quantitative analysis of all the different hazards that are present in your workplace. There are three main states in this analysis, which include:
Identify: The risks to identify may be radiological, physical, chemical or different in nature.
Perform: Conduct a risk analysis based on the frequency and severity of the potential event.
Establish: Determine what the acceptable risk levels, thresholds and targets are and then implement controls for high risk areas.
Make sure to repeat the cycle frequently, re-testing the risk levels to ensure your controls are effective and that all new hazards have been accounted for.
2. Create Similar Exposure Groups to Help Unify Your Worker Safety Plans
A Similar Exposure Group, or SEG, will look at all similar, hazard exposures for different groups of people. These are created by comparing things such as demographics, locations, processes, job roles and any other relevant factor.
Some of the things to keep in mind as you create your SEG include:
Infrequent and Unplanned: Events like this, include equipment malfunctions, chemical spills and natural disasters.
Diversity of Tasks: Determine what tasks have ergonomic and environmental impact on your workers.
Collaboration: The crossover of any job tasks exposes workers to even more hazards.
When you gather this information, you can build an effective and comprehensive safety plan that includes various processes for sampling, monitoring and testing. Then the data can be both calculated and then compared to the threshold targets and limits.
3. Track Your Calibration, Asset and Maintenance Records
According to ISO standards, you need to record assets and then adopt calibration and measurement systems to help control the maintenance and production of both equipment and products. This is not only a requirement, it’s also a crucial step in improving overall employee safety.
When you automate these processes, you can remain on top of your equipment, thereby improving overall safety. You can even set up automatic requirements regarding when your equipment requires maintenance and alert the necessary parties when any unplanned maintenance is required.
When you remain on top of maintenance and calibration, you can easily avoid workplace injuries.
4. Integrate and Automate Employee Training
Your employee safety data doesn’t serve any purpose if you don’t use it. By training your workers on all the occupational hygiene practices, it helps to keep them both accountable and knowledgeable, thereby increasing overall safety. When a process changes, then automatic notifications for the required training and testing are sent to the proper employees. This helps to create a centralized location for all the training activities that are coordinated with all other parts of your safety plan for employees.
Approximately 40 percent of all OSHA inspectors are considered occupational/industrial hygienists. As a result, you need to make occupational hygiene a top priority in your company. This will help you create a safer workplace for your employees, which can increase your workers safety, productivity and overall happiness with their job.
What are your favorite tips for improving worker safety?
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