OSEA Safety Blog

Safety Hazards Never Take a Day Off

Thursday, January 14, 2021 Brenda Griffin

Safety Hazards Never Take a Day Off

So far during 2020, our safety focus has often narrowed to social distancing and wearing masks due to the corona virus pandemic. While this virus remains a threat to our health and wellbeing, so do other safety hazards workers regularly and continuously face on the job. We must not lose sight of these risks.

Understandably, the workforce is under stress that comes with massive changes to our lives and workplaces, along with uncertainty. Even still, we must continue to practice hazard recognition, evaluation and elimination, and control to continue to protect employees on the job.

Here are some recent injury and fatality examples that remind us that safety hazards never take a day off:

  1. An iron worker fell 110 feet to his death while working on the construction of the new Los Angeles Rams and Chargers Stadium.
  2. Two workers at Niagara Lubricant suffered steam burns while mixing solutions.
  3. A New Mexico worker died while inspecting a railroad tank car, a confined space.
  4. A 22 year-old man was killed while working in a 14-foot deep trench that collapsed. He was the 18th construction worker to die on the job in New York City this year.

Additionally, overall motor vehicle fatalities went up 14% per mile driven in March, in spite of a year over year 8% decrease. So even with fewer cars on the roads during quarantine, driving remains hazardous.

During these challenging times, safety training, tool box talks, audits, and inspections must continue to take place to keep workers focused on safety throughout the day. Additional time and attention may be needed to clearly evaluate new or high risk tasks through conducting job hazard analysis.

Employees can also benefit from practicing job stress reduction techniques to help alleviate the over all stress we are experiencing. These include movement of all kinds; like walking, stretching, literally shaking to shake off the stress. Spending time outdoors, in quiet spaces, and in simple meditation can also be beneficial.

Safety is not about what we already know about safe work practices on the job, it’s about what we do to work safe – day in and day out. Since job hazards never take a day off, neither should safety practices. Stay safe and work safe, every day.

https://www.foxnews.com/sports/construction-worker-dies-falling-chargers-rams-stadium

https://www.wkbw.com/news/local-news/two-workers-injured-at-niagara-lubricant-in-buffalo

https://apnews.com/fd16b08251039abb98f54f99e39627d1

https://www.nsc.org/in-the-newsroom/motor-vehicle-fatality-rates-jump-14-in-march-despite-quarantines

https://www.ehstoday.com/construction/article/21917146/man-buried-in-completely-avoidable-fatal-accident

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