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Are you working safe?

Accidents happen, it’s just a fact of life. It doesn’t matter where you are or how careful you might be. We all know that they’re unpredictable, that’s just the nature of an accident. But are the avoidable?

Depending on where your business is set-up, there will be different lengths you can go to in order to avoid unnecessary injury or damage to property.

Are you working safe?

Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do in order to make your work environment safer to be in:

First and foremost…

Think safe! This is the best way to avoid an accident or injury. You don’t constantly have to be thinking about being safe, but training yourself to move around spaces responsibly will benefit you in the long run.

A perfect example could be that you need to reach something placed on the top of a cabinet. Remember: think safe! 

Whatever you do, don’t use a chair to elevate yourself. This is incredibly dangerous and isn’t designed to support your entire body weight, no matter what the label promises! Invest in a step-ladder and follow the instructions for use.

Simple problem solving like this might seem trivial, but it’s worth it in the long run.

Evaluate your surroundings

Once you’re able to think safe, you can really start to be safe. A simple walk around your work space will give you the chance to point out hazards. Reducing risks is more likely to ensure the safety of you and those around you.

Here are some examples of what to look out for:

Don’t let poor carpeting floor you – Sometimes if you’re working out of a smaller building, it can be tempting not to improve the aesthetics. Make sure any flooring is laid correctly, it saves you spending a few hours in A&E after a fall or worse having to take park in a lawsuit.

De-clutter whenever you can – This is vitally important. Many injuries in the workplace result from poorly placed objects. Find a place for everything, and if you can’t then get rid! Good organisation will also speak volumes to any visiting clients.

Good lighting – It’s unlikely that you’re going to work in the dark, but just make sure that the lighting is adequate so your eyes aren’t having to strain. Adversely, overly-bright fluorescent lighting found in offices can be damaging.

Think ergonomics – Are you sat correctly? Lengthy spells in the wrong position can leave you with a bad back or perhaps even a chronic condition. If you have employees, then make sure they have chairs and desks that offer support.

Recording incidents – Although we don’t want any incidents to take place, we can learn from them if they do. Recording accidents and illness is required by law, but don’t look at it as a chore. A safer work environment is a happier one.

A lot of our members work out in the open. This doesn't mean that health and safety shouldn't concern you. Road safety is paramount, especially if you have employees travelling from point a to point b. Evaluations and assessments may be required from time to time.

Stress

Stress and anxiety might not be something you’ll notice from a simple stroll around the office. There any many issues originating in the office that can contribute to stress.

Set out a plan that will allow you to effectively manage stress and anxiety.

You might also want to take a look at this helpful document published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), it explores stress in the workplace and offers advice on how to successfully combat it.

Our members have the latest information on health and safety in the workplace, written and regularly updated by industry experts. If you need some support, then visit our FSB Health and Safety Advice page where you can find further details of how to contact us.

If you’re not a member of FSB, then you can sign up today! Join small business owners throughout the UK who are already part of our growing community.

Take a look at this handy infographic that features common causes of accidents as well as preventative measures.

FSB Health and Safety Advice from FSB

A dedicated resource destination for Health & Safety advice and news with regularly updated documents written by Health & Safety experts.

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