October 29th, 2020
Here's 9 tips to have a look at, they may be useful for helping stay safe at work!
1 Understand the risks associated with your work. Once you know the particular hazards of your job or workplace, you can take steps to reduce your risk of work related injury or illness.
2 Reduce workplace stress. Stress can lead to depression, sleeping difficulties and problems with concentration.
3 Take regular breaks. Staying fresh and alert will help you avoid injury or burnout. Schedule the most difficult tasks of each day when your concentration is best, such as first thing in the morning.
4 Avoid stooping or twisting. Use ergonomically designed furniture and equipment and rearrange your work area so that everything you need is within easy reach.
5 Use mechanical aids where possible. Instead of trying to lift or carry a heavy object, use a wheelbarrow, conveyor belt, crane or forklift.
6 Protect your back. If you need to pick up and carry heavy loads, keep the load close to the body and lift with your thigh muscles.
7 Wear protective equipment to suit the task. If worn correctly, gear such as ear plugs, earmuffs, hard hat, safety goggles, gloves or full-face mask can drastically reduce your risk of injury.
8 Stay sober. Alcohol and drugs are a contributing factor in around three percent of workplace fatalities.
9 Talk over any concerns. Your employer needs to be informed about hazards and risks. If you know of something unsafe you need to speak to your employer about it!
With summer holidays just around the corner, you maybe leaving behind your homes for holiday spots both near and far. Planning ahead and taking a few simple precautions to ensure security of your home could save unnecessary stress while on holiday.
Here's a few tips from a security company on how to keep your home safe while away.
Ask a neighbor to collect your mail
And to keep an eye out for any leaflets or newspapers left on your doorstep. A neighbor parking in your driveway also signals someone is home (and they will appreciate the extra car space).
Upgrade your defense
One of the more obvious tips is to make sure your security is up to date. Recent research found 60% of victims' security had been compromised due to a faulty deadlock or loose window frame that was easily jimmied open. Delaying intrusion is important. Particularly if an alarm is triggered and the would-be thief is racing against the clock before a responder arrives.
Don't help conceal a thief
Burglars like privacy. They can be deterred from targeting your house by establishing a clear line of sight from the house to the street. This encourages "natural surveillance" and makes your home a harder target. Remove any bushes or shrubs near and entrance that could help a thief be hidden from a passer-by's view.
Avoid climbing points
Criminals know that first-floor and above doors and windows are typically less secure than ground-level entry points. Toeholds such as external air-conditioners and (ironically) window grills can help criminals gain access to upper levels.
Monitor your home from wherever you are
Modern IP monitored security systems allow homeowners to arm and disarm their alarm system, remotely open doors for visitors and even view cameras from their smart phone wherever they are.
Don't advertise your valuables
If you have expensive items in plain sight you might as well be shouting "we have money!". Make sure to conceal any valuable or expensive items by keeping the blinds closed or moving them away from windows.
When discarding the boxes and packaging from this year's Christmas presents, carefully consider their visibility and put them out as close to rubbish collection day as possible.
Store valuables in a safe
The most common targets in a robbery are money and jewellery. By installing a quality safe in your house you can provide extra security for those more valuable items. Just remember, criminals know the bedroom safe likely has the jewellery in it. Consider using that as a decoy and installing a better safe somewhere they won't look.
Guard your keys
It is well known that you should not hide keys on the outside of the house. But you should also be aware of the risks involved when lending your keys to tradespeople and acquaintance's.
Keys are easily copied and can provide burglars with easy access to your property. Consider an electronic locking system or a "restricted key" system which makes this more difficult. If your house is broken into, immediately change the locks. Your insurer likely includes this in the policy.
Don't share your free house and cool gifts on social media
Stop over sharing. Posting photos of your wonderful holiday to social media might seem like a no-brainer but advertising that you're away from home can result in unwelcome visitors.
If you over share your private information to the public on platforms such as Instagram, Facebook or Twitter people will be able to easily compile data including where you live and when your house is free.
After taking the steps above, ensure your Home & Contents cover is adequate and inform the insurer if you are away for any length of time.
How to get good Health & Safety advice
Health and Safety is becoming more and more part of workplace culture. But how do you choose where to get good advice from?
I read the following at the Government website business.govt.nz on advice when choosing a HS adviser :
Can I get a quote first?
If you ring a plumber for help, you ask for a quote first. The same goes for H&S consultants, so shop around. Just remember, cheaper doesn't mean better. Whoever you go with should still have the right experience and qualifications.
Can I see examples of your H&S work for similar clients?
Ring a few advisors who seem a good fit for your needs, and ask if they can give examples of similar H&S work they've done recently.
Can I check your credentials?
Unfortunately, not all H&S advisors give good advice, or are even accredited. Before handing over money, check that they're competent to advise you on your particular H&S needs.
Can I contact previous customers?
Make sure your advisor can do all they say they can do. Check if they have a history of providing practical H&S advice that supports business operations. Getting recommendations from other customers is a good way to go about this.
Health and Safety is not something you are thinking about constantly. There are so many pressures you face in a day, around staff, productivity, customer expectations, financial concerns, the list goes on.
However it is important to assess whether the safety (and health) controls you have in place are effective and being used by your staff.
WorkSafe provide the following helpful outline :
1)ACT : Take action on lessons learnt
2)PLAN : Assess the risk and identify suitable control measure (Talk with staff about this. )
3)CHECK : Monitor the performance of the control measure. (This includes workers reporting incidents and accidents. These may well show an ineffective control)
4)DO : (implement control measures that effectively eliminate or minimise the risk)
WorkSafe point out that PPE should not be the first or only control. In other words, the risk needs to be reduced or eliminated by other means first.
Here’s the recognised method as outlined in the HS Regulations:
3.Isolating the risk.
Start at the top. Get as many controls as you can in the first five areas. Then “mop up” the residual risk with PPE
Want help. That’s what we are here for,
The short answer is yes, but there’s a but.
They need to work in practice. There’s no use having a whole lot of wording around a process and how to carry it out safely, if it’s not practical. It needs to be usable, but not at the expense of safety.
Workers simply won’t use it if the process doesn’t fit the work being carried out.
If you are a practical person and have worked on the tools, shop floor, workplace yourself, try the process out. Does it mitigate the risks involved? Does it work in practice?
If you are not able to access it yourself, you could ask someone who can.
There was a major case in Aussie recently, where an accidental death occurred on a worksite.
Here’s a portion from the case notes:
"During the investigation, it was admitted that the company did not have any formal or written safety policies or procedures within the workplace and that the business did not ensure that workers held the appropriate licences for the plant they operated.”
Of course, another required area especially with new inexperienced workers, is supervision. Watching and guiding until competent.
There are several different models for supervision. Give us a “yell” if you or someone you know wants some help in this area. No charge for an email or phone call.
Bob is passionate about good workplace Health and Safety. Hes experienced , qualified, easy to talk to and always available.