April 2013 Newsletter
Controlling Slip, Trip and Fall Accidents
While the majority of slips, trips and falls are winter-weather related, they continue to be a problem year round. In fact, they're among the leading cause of workplace injuries with 200,000 nonfatal occurrences each year.
But with vigilant monitoring, you can help prevent a lot of injuries. And while some of the precautions may seem obvious, keeping them in mind, and practice, will help make your workplace and your bottom line healthier. They're also a sound investment considering your share of the $90,000 a rotator cuff injury, for instance, can end up costing after surgery, physical therapy, medication and follow-up visits.
The good news is hazards are typically easily identified and prevented.
Contributing Factors to Slips, Trips and Falls:
- Flooring conditions
- Floor coverings
- Improper cleaning materials
- Inadequate lighting
- Changes in elevation
- Handrails and stair rails
- Spill cleanup procedures
- Wet floors
- Cluttered and obstructed walkways
- Ice and snow
- Parking lot conditions
- Blocked vision
- Improper footwear
- Not holding railings
- Risk taking on ladders
- Using unsafe things to reach
- Not paying attention
- Make employees aware of potential hazards
- Empower employees to report hazards immediately
- Avoid risky behavior
- Post warning signs
- Avoid obstacles in walkways
- Avoid stringing cords across walkways (and tape them down if doing so is necessary)
- Encourage safe practices such as closing file cabinet drawers after use
- Pick up and stow loose items from the floor
- Emphasize caution on placement of carrying items such as briefcases, boxes, etc.
- Keep work areas neat
- Repair uneven surfaces
- Keep surfaces as dry as possible
- Remove snow and ice before employees arrive in winter
- Light areas adequately
- Use handrails on stairs with 4 or more risers
- Encourage/require slip-resistant footwear
- Repair potholes, broken pavement and cracks/gaps in parking lots
- Don't allow employees to carry items that block their vision
The OSHA Outreach Training Program for General Industry is an excellent resource for teaching General Industry workers about their rights, employer responsibilities, and how to file a complaint - as well as how to identify, abate, avoid and prevent job related hazards.
The workshop lasts 10 hours (1.5 days) with 9 hours of prescribed courses and 1 hour of electives. Training covers a variety of General Industry safety and health hazards which workers may encounter, and emphasizes hazard identification, avoidance, control and prevention. There is a $5 per person charge for the credentials.
Learning objectives on a number of these topics are on the CD which is distributed in all OSHA General Industry trainer classes, and is available for download at the Outreach Training Program website.
To learn more or to register, please call Judy McQuilling at 800-382-8837.
Topics are as follows:
- Mandatory - 9 hours
- Introduction to OSHA - 2 hours
- OSHA has required training content for this module - see www.osha.gov/dte/outreach/construction_generalindustry/teachingaids.html.
- Covers workers' rights, employer responsibilities and how to file a complaint. It includes helpful worker safety and health resources. It also provides samples of a weekly fatality and catastrophe report, material data safety sheet and the OSHA Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses.
- Materials include an Instructor Guide, PowerPoint slides, student handouts, and participatory activities.
- Walking and Working Surfaces, Including Fall Protection - 1 hour
- Exit Routes, Emergency Action Plans, Fire Prevention Plans, and Fire Protection - 1 hour
- Electrical - 1 hour
- Personal Protective Equipment - 1 hour
- Hazard Communication - 1 hour
- Ergonomics/Lifting Safety - 1 hour
- Bloodborne Pathogens - 1 hour
- Introduction to OSHA - 2 hours
- Elective/Optional - 1 hour: Must present at
least two hours of training on the following topics. At least two
topics must be presented. The minimum length of any topic is 1
- Hazardous Materials
- Materials Handling
- Machine Guarding
- Introduction to Industrial Hygiene
- Safety and Health Program
- Fall Protection
- Teach other General Industry hazards or policies and/or expand on the mandatory or elective topics
IPEP course work consists of these 9 courses plus 1 optional course selected by participant; optional course subject to approval by OSHA.
Reminder to Post Your Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses
Don't forget that OSHA requires you to post the Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses clearly in a common area on the premises of your organization where all employees can easily see and read it.