Benefits of portable fire extinguisher training in the warehouse.

By developing a yearly fire extinguisher training program in your warehouse, your employees will become knowledable in the process and means of extinguishing small fires by choosing the right extinguisher to remove one of the four elements of the fire tetrahedron.

From IFSTA Essentials 4th Edition: Fire is a rapid, self-sustaining oxidation process accompanied by the evolution of heat and light of varying intensities.  The burning process can be interrupted by removing one of the four elements in the fire tetrahedron (Heat, Fuel, Oxygen, or Chemical Chain Reaction).

Employees that know the classification of fires will also be able to choose the correct extinguisher for the four most common types of fire classes:

  • Class A or ordinary combustibles
  • Class B or flammable and combustible liquids and gases
  • Class C or energized electrical equipment
  • Class D or combustible metals

Trained employees understand that a portable fire extinguisher is the first line of defense in an emergency. Employees that are trained yearly in the use of portable fire extinguishers also can make informed and confident decisions on when it is ok to attack a fire and when it is appropriate to leave the area and let firefighters handle the emergency. Those decisions are based on some of the following factors:

  • Knowing what is burning
  • Fire is not spreading rapidly
  • Smoke and heat has not filled the area
  • You have a clear path of escape
  • Following the training the employee has received

Remember that trained and motivated employees will make confident decisions that can save the company from valuable losses and possible injuries or deaths.  This type of safety training can also save your company on valuable insurance costs as well.

Eye Safety, Prevention & Care in the Workplace

January is National Eye Safety Month! 

Your eyesight is a priceless commodity and once lost can never be brought back.  Every day in the workplace employees are exposed to numerous hazards to the eyes from chemicals to flying objects.  Protecting your eyes starts with education and utilizing the right equipment. 

There are many different types of eye protection available to you and choosing the right equipment should be based on the hazards YOU face in your environment.  Your eye protection should be;

•Strong, durable & lightweight

•Resistant to impact, penetration & heat

•Easy to clean

Eye Protection can include safety glasses,goggles,face shields or helmets.  They should always fit snugly and be comfortable without becoming obtrusive throughout the workday.  If you wear contact lenses be especially careful because they can absorb or trap particles and gases that can injure your eyes.

Remember: Regular prescription glasses can’t protect you on the job!   You must wear only “approved” protective gear (check with your employer).  OSHA requires that safety glasses or goggles meet standards developed by ANSI (American National Standards Institute).

Too many eye injuries occur because eye protection was required, issued & available- and NOT USED!!!

KNOW WHAT TO DO IN AN EMERGENCY 

♦Particles in the eyes- Flush eyes with water until the particle comes out.

♦Chemical splash or burn- Hold your eyes open and flush with water for at least 15 minutes.  Get immediate medical attention and check your MSDS for specific 1st aid treatment.

♦Blow to the eye- Apply a cold compress for 15 minutes to reduce pain & swelling.

♦Cuts near the eye- Bandage the eyes loosely and get immediate medical attention.

Always seek professional medical attention if warrented!

EYE CARE

Regular care of your eyes is also very important, eye exams on a regular basis (every 2-5 years) can uncover underlying medical problems such as diabetes , hypertension or the onset of Glaucoma.   And for eye diseases such as Glaucoma, the damage may be detected through your normal exams before you notice any signs or symptoms.

According to the study “Vision Problems in the U.S.” by Prevent Blindness America and the National Eye Institute (NEI), there are nearly 2.3 million Americans ages 40 and older who have glaucoma.  Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in the world and the leading cause of blindness in African American and Hispanic populations in America. 

Pertinent risk factors for Glaucoma;

•Over 40 years of age

•Race- Leading cause of blindness in african and hispanic populations

•Family history

•Diabetes- If you have diabetes you have a higher risk of developing Glaucoma

•Nearsightedness

•Eye injury or surgery

•Extended use of steroid medications

REMEMBER TO TAKE CARE OF YOUR EYES!

 

 

Accident Investigations: An Essential Tool in Every Work Comp Management Program

Performing accident investigations when an employee gets injured is an important step in carrying out your company’s work comp management program. The first reason that comes to many people’s minds for conducting an accident investigation is probably to prevent a fraudulent claim from being filed, but there are many other good reasons for conducting these investigations.

Accident investigations help to identify the root cause of the injury. Was an inadequate workstation to blame? Or, maybe a malfunctioning tool or machine? If it is found that one of these scenarios was the cause of the accident, they can be promptly corrected before another employee suffers a similar fate. Maybe the employee had a pre-existing problem with their injured body part. Or, maybe they were doing something that they weren’t supposed to be doing so there is no equipment that needs to be fixed.

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Believe in Your Employees and Create a Safer Workplace

Do you believe in yourself? Do you believe in your employees? Do you believe that every job assignment makes a company flow and is just as important as the next? Do you believe that if any employee is injured, it affects the entire company? Take time to think that if any one of your employees was injured, who could pick up the slack to keep your business on course? If you are an employer who believes in your employees, then you are already on the right track to creating a safer workplace.

Returning an injured worker back to the assembly line is just as important as returning the CEO to his or her desk. Whether it is a repetitive strain injury such as carpal tunnel, an ergonomic issue such as neck or back strain, or even a fracture from a traumatic injury; recovery and return to pre-injury employment is the most important and mutual goal.

Action should be taken to assist with the needs for your injured worker. Your injured employee needs to have a plan for the beginning, middle and end of his or her recovery. With graduating work, programs like work hardening, and safety classes your workplace can have the chance to prevent future injuries as well.

Contact Proof:Positive for more information about preventing future workplace injuries, and assisting those who have already been injured.

Could Your Employee Workstations Use an Upgrade?

Warehouse employees are subjected to a great deal of repetitive stresses on the body and as a result, musculoskeletal disorders are their most common forms of injuries. One way to significantly decrease the number of musculoskeletal injuries sustained while on the job is to make their work stations more ergonomically sound.

Ergonomics is the science behind why things are designed the way that they are. Handheld tools, for example, may have ergonomic handles on them that decrease or disperse the force that is applied to the hand. Also, workstations can be designed in a way to maximize productivity while reducing employee fatigue and risk of sustaining an injury.

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Does Your Business Practice Ergonomic Principles?

Most of us have heard the term “ergonomics” at one point in our work environment. The question is do we really know what it means? The dictionary defines ergonomics as “the applied science of equipment design, as for the workplace, intended to maximize productivity by reducing operator fatigue and discomfort.” That seems a little too scientific to me. Ergonomics should be simple!

Evaluating your workplace for safety, and making sure your employees have the tools needed to do their job, is where you need to start. Back pain is a common injury or complaint in the workplace and often times it can be caused by simple work activities. Applying ergonomic principles can help prevent injuries in your workplace.

Most of us think of ergonomics applies only to physically demanding jobs, but what is often overlooked is the office environment. People who sit most of the day, such as those who work behind a computer, need to be concerned with ergonomics as well. Having a well planned office and computer ergonomic system can help reduce the risk of repetitive injury.

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Decorating the Workplace – Keep Safety in Mind!

Decorating the workplace is always a great way to boost spirits during the holidays. But, it is important to be aware of potential hazards. The same principles that go into decorating your home in a safe manner should apply to your workplace.

Make sure you are checking for fire hazards when selecting your decorations. Be careful not to punch your staples through the cords on lights and extension cords, and know how many strands of lights can go together. If using decorations outdoors, check to see if they are rated for outdoor use. Putting your lighted decorations on timers is a great way to protect the office.

Checking your fire safety equipment is a practice that is often overlooked during the holiday decorating festivities. Make sure your smoke detectors are working. Have your fire extinguisher inspected and serviced if needed. When deciding on which decorations to use make sure they will not compromise your exits and or sprinkler system.

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Be Proactive When It Comes to Workers Compensation Fraud

It is much easier to prevent workers compensation fraud than it is to prove it. As an employer it is important to make sure to hire people who have the skills and the character that best fit with your company. Having a sound hiring policy is a good place to start.

Here are a few suggestions on how to be proactive:

  • Hire wisely. Conduct background checks on all applicants, and verify their references.
  • Focus on safety. Making the workplace safer reduces the chance of accidents and the opportunity to fake an injury.
  • Develop a return-to-work policy. Tell job candidates that if they get hurt on the job, the company will work with the doctor to help them return to work as soon as medically possible.
  • Educate, don’t threaten. Explain that workers compensation fraud hurts everyone, not just the insurance carrier. Let employees know that fraudulent claims can force employers to decrease benefits, lay off employees, or go out of business.
  • Adopt a zero-tolerance policy. Make it clear that fraud can carry serious consequences, including termination and prosecution.
  • Stay in touch. Keep regular contact with employees who are off work due to injury or illness. Document each contact or attempted contact. Injured workers who are difficult to contact or who are belligerent may be committing fraud.

This may all sound like a lot to do to keep your company safe. Proof:Positive can help. Let one of our representatives show you how you can protect your business.

Reasons to Protect Your Employees’ Back

Injuries to the spinal column or back region are common, and many of these injuries are preventable. Depending on the type of business you have, using a good lifting program and educational safety system, can help protect your employees from injury.

Here are some compelling reasons to protect your employees from back injuries:

  • 80% of Americans will have a back injury that requires medical attention
  • Back injuries are the second most common cause of lost work time, next to the common cold
  • Injured backs are often subject to re-injury
  • In addition to missed work, there may be major costs accrued by your company
  • Back injuries alone cost the American industry $10- 14 billion in workers compensation costs and about 100- million lost workdays annually

 Source: Design to Success

Take the time to analyze your company or business and see if your safety program protects you and your employees. Proof:Positive can help you save money and create a safe environment with safety educated employees.

Health and Wellness Rooms Help Reduce Work Comp Costs

Educating your employee about their injury is a good idea. What benefits do you get when your employee understands safety awareness and proper lifting? Is there a program that can help your injured employees understand their injury, help rehabilitate and return to full duty?

Health and Wellness Rooms are your answer! You can benefit greatly when using the Early Return to Work Program. Our post-accident prevention program can help minimize workers’ compensation costs and reduce overall losses for your company or business. The program works closely with the injured employee’s doctor to develop a plan to return the worker back to full duty. Our Health and Wellness Room can help with those that need a temporary shift in responsibilities through our light-duty program.

In this program we will educate the injured employee. We don’t just rely on the doctor to help the injured worker return to work. They are encouraged – within their restrictions – to walk, stretch and complete the therapy given to them by their doctor to aid in their recovery. They will have the opportunity to read and learn about their injury and ways of prevention. In a classroom environment they will have an open forum to ask and learn about their injuries. All of this will be done with the goal of returning the injured worker back to work quickly, safely, with more awareness of their injury, and with the knowledge of how to prevent future accidents from occuring. This way the injured employee continues to work while earning wages throughout recovery.

Learning can be very infectious and these employees can bring back a positive attitude and knowledge that can be shared with other employees. Let us help you:

Your company can undoubtedly save money with a program like this that has a proven method.

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