Every workplace should adhere to safety and security standards. For one, having organizational safety and security processes in place can help prevent work-related injuries, accidents, property damage, and burglaries.
According to the International Labour Organization, around 2.3 million people worldwide experience work-related accidents or injuries every year. The United Nations agency has attributed these incidents to poor working conditions, which could have been prevented if workplaces complied with safety regulations.
However, business and property owners and managers can only prevent workplace-related accidents if they know what puts their employees at risk. In this article, we’ll discuss some of the most common workplace safety threats. We’ll also look at some ways to tighten security and safety in the workplace.
3 Common Workplace Safety Threats
Various workplace security risks pose potential harm to employees and visitors. To ensure that these hazards are minimized, if not eliminated, it’s important to identify them beforehand.
Here are three of the most common workplace safety threats.
Fire is one of the most common safety hazards in the workplace. In fact, on average, there are over 13 million fire cases in the United States each year. This causes more than 3,300 deaths and 14,000 injuries annually.
Among the usual causes of fire incidents in the workplace include faulty wiring, lack of proper equipment, and failure to abide by safety regulations. As such, it is crucial to install the necessary equipment to avoid these risks. For example, mounting fire rated doors can help prevent the spread of smoke in case of fire, minimizing property damage while keeping people safe during evacuation.
Titan Metal Products has a comprehensive product line of specialty doors ideal for applications requiring fire, smoke, hurricane, blast ratings; bullet resistance; and detention security features. As a leading manufacturer of fire-rated doors, Titan Metal Products offers the highest quality, USA-made custom metal doors and frames.
In ensuring that your workplace is protected against fire, it’s equally important to regularly audit your fire safety measures and equipment like fire extinguishers, alarms, sprinklers, and hoses. This will enable your employees and the fire response team to put out a fire sooner during emergencies.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, an estimated 1,117,696 burglaries were recorded in 2019. These incidents accounted for 16.1% of the crimes reported in the same year. The data further revealed that victims of burglary offenses suffered an estimated $3 billion in property losses.
With these tremendous numbers, business and property owners and managers must take workplace security more seriously. For instance, installing surveillance cameras and a monitored alarm system will help ensure workplace security by providing real-time footage of the work areas and workplace activities. Also, making sure that all areas are well-lit can help deter potential intruders and burglars.
In addition, installing a security door will help prevent outsiders from trespassing your property or vicinity, providing you with additional security. At Titan Metal Products, we manufacture specialized doors that can limit access to authorized personnel only.
Check out this article to see how we provided Hamilton Cove Apartments with additional security in all building areas to satisfy the property’s need for both form and function: “Form Meets Function at Hamilton Cove Apartments – Titan Metal Products.”
One of the most difficult hazards to stop and even predict are natural disasters, like hurricanes, storms, and tornadoes. Since these are forces of nature, preventing them is much more challenging.
The best way to keep the workplace safe during these unfortunate events is to equip it with heavy-duty safety equipment like specialty doors. This will help ensure that the employees are protected from these natural disasters when they happen.
An emergency plan is also an essential element of workplace safety. It helps minimize the effects of the disaster, therefore reducing the amount of potential business or property losses.
According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, an emergency plan should include the following:
- All possible emergencies and their consequences; the required actions, procedures, and resources available
- A detailed list of emergency response personnel with their contact information and responsibilities
- Floor plans
- Large-scale maps with evacuation routes and gas and water lines
To ensure that everyone knows the protocol during natural disasters, make sure to include a section about it in the employee handbook.
6 Best Practices in Ensuring Workplace Safety and Security
1. Integrate workplace safety into all facets of the organization
There are various ways you can integrate workplace safety into the organization. One is by writing a policy on it to further emphasize its importance. Not only will this put your intent on paper but it will also be used as a guide by your employees.
Allotting resources to improve your property’s safety and security will also help ensure that your employees are safe at work. Moreover, promptly addressing any report of unsafe or unhealthy conditions or work practices can minimize workplace hazard-related accidents and illnesses.
In addition, adhering to government-mandated safety regulations can help reduce workplace risks and hazards, helping maintain a safe and secure space for all your employees.
2. Identify and control hazards
The first step to creating an effective safety program is identifying the hazards that might be present in the area. Review all records of accidents, injuries, and illnesses found in your reports and logbooks. Look for trends in these reports, including the kinds of injuries or illnesses sustained, the time of day the accidents occurred, the equipment that caused the injuries or accidents, and the departments where the incidents happened.
After figuring out the hazards, the next step is learning how to control them. Determine which ones can be fixed immediately and which ones require a long-term resolution. Then, develop a safety plan for managing the hazards.
Before proceeding with the safety plan, it’s important to perform a job hazard analysis first so you can identify the specific dangers of each task and address them accordingly. Remember to also incorporate into the plan the industry’s best practices. These include engineering controls like safety tools, equipment, and facilities and administrative controls such as breaks and rotating workers.
Finally, keep in mind to periodically re-survey the hazard control measures you have in place, so you’ll know if they need to be maintained, reinforced, or modified.
3. Educate and train your employees about safety and security
By training your employees on basic hazard management, you’re equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed to stay safe in the workplace. You’re also enabling them to protect themselves during emergencies. Keep in mind that the safest people are those who are informed about the potential workplace hazards and are aware of the safety precautions and protocol.
As such, you must provide a general safety orientation for your workers. Organizing specific workshops and training programs that tackle the potential hazards in your property will also enable your employees to better prepare for these risks and handle them properly in case they happen. Moreover, conducting retraining sessions will help emphasize the importance of observing safety and security at all times.
4. Periodically check safety and security equipment
Regularly checking your safety and security equipment is a crucial factor in minimizing workplace hazards. It allows you to assess whether the equipment should be repaired, adjusted, or replaced. It also helps you detect flaws, so you can address them before they result in health and safety risks.
While not all work equipment requires frequent inspection, it’s still best to regularly check them to prevent injuries or accidents that may arise from incorrect installation, reinstallation, deterioration, or other similar circumstances.
To determine the need for inspection and inspection frequencies, safety experts recommend conducting a risk assessment. This process will help identify potential hazards and their possible consequences, serving as a guide in mitigating workplace risks.
5. Continually improve your security system
Here, an effective method is to regularly review where your safety program’s strength lies and where it could use some update. In particular, you could assess how your workplace is faring by using the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Safety and Health Program Assessment Worksheet. It’s helpful for evaluating your workplace injury and illness statistics to see if the cases dropped and if such a decrease can be attributed to an improved security system.
For physical improvements, make sure to replace defective door locks, update restricted access to certain rooms or offices, and upgrade monitoring devices and alarms as needed. Meanwhile, all devices and tools should be secured with passcodes to ensure your workplace’s digital security.
6. Foster a culture of safety and security
As an employer, you’re responsible for your employees’ well-being, which you can achieve by nurturing an environment of safety and security.
More than just a buzzword, workplace safety entails a positive mindset, attitude, and behavior. It also means both the employer and the employees should adopt and exhibit an encouraging approach toward it. By fostering a culture of safety and security in the organization, workplace hazards can be prevented.
Instilling a Safety Culture in the Workplace
A responsible employer ensures everyone’s safety in the workplace. Here, safety standards are essential, from risk assessment and employee training programs to installation and maintenance of security systems.
If you need advanced fire rated doors and framing systems to tighten your workplace security, check out Titan Metal Products’ glass and framing solutions. We address unique business needs and requirements by offering custom fabrication.
With our high-quality security doors, you can find the perfect solution for your next project at Titan Metal Products. Get in touch with us to know more about top products in the industry!