Are You Aware?
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, employees are afforded certain protections. In addition, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) requires a workplace safety program to manage the prevention of work related injuries and illness. As part of these programs, employees should be informed of their protections as well as potential safety hazards and citations.
Employers are required to keep the Job Safety and Health poster, issued by the Department of Labor, on continuous display informing employees of their right to a safe working environment. If the business operates under an OSHA approved State Plan, the poster displayed should be the state’s equivalent.
Additional safety information displayed may include hazards, chemical information sheets and injury/illness data. As needed, information may be conveyed in various forms of communication beyond continuous displays. It is also advisable that safety information be tailored to specific tasks. Employees responsible for task execution should be regularly updated on safety practices and concerns.
Some businesses may require additional safety information postings to accommodate the compliance requirements of that industry. The Department of Labor offers an online Poster Advisor to help your business determine which displays are appropriate and necessary.
Are You Prepared?
Many guard techniques, considered “engineering controls” do not rely on operator behavior to keep workers safe.
The Job Safety and Health poster is free and available online. It may be downloaded or ordered, and employers can request copies in additional languages other than English. Spanish, Chinese, Korean and other languages are available. Post in a high visibility area such as a break room or locker room.
Employers should never have to purchase this poster. Beware of solicitations stating otherwise. These scammers are not affiliated with OSHA.
In addition to signage, there are many ways to communicate safety information to your employees including:
- Safety information should initially be conveyed through all new employee training in a language the employee understands.
- Share PowerPoint presentations in additional training sessions.
- These visual reminders help walk employees through safety processes and protocol.
- Offer “toolbox talks” for briefings about safety changes or reminders.
- During staff meetings, include a safety tip as a regular agenda item.
- If your company utilizes an email newsletter, include safety best practices and warnings. Newsletters are often distributed once a month and can be an excellent source for regular communication. In addition, through online resources, employers can track if the newsletter email is opened.
- Share websites and blog posts through email, social media or communication apps such as Slack or Remind.
- In a high traffic area, prepare a safety bulletin board where all safety information is current and regularly updated. Include pictures of safe actions.
- Print the newsletter and post it in a high visibility area.
- Use color codes, posters, labels and signs to warn employees of potential risks.
Keeping safety information visible helps a company establish a standard and culture of safety awareness.
As more and more businesses rely on technology for everyday practice,
consider how you might utilize apps and social media to inform employees about safety. For example, messaging apps can alert vehicle operators of potential road hazards or changes. Social media platforms such as Instagram or SnapChat allow businesses to share images and provide documentation of safety best practices.
From bulletin boards to digital message boards, keep safety in the forefront of your employees’ minds.
However, safety always starts at the top. Senior leadership and management will set the example for your company’s safety culture. Encourage managers and supervisors to share tips, developments and concerns with employees so that everyone remains at their safest and most productive.
The Berkley Industrial Comp Difference
Berkley Industrial Comp’s Risk Assessment Management and Prevention (R.A.M.P.) Team of loss control professionals is here to assist our insureds with protection of their people and assets. We can help you develop effective risk management solutions based on your company’s unique needs. Let our safety professionals help you determine the best methods for posting and communicating safety information to your employees.
Take advantage of our knowledge and expertise when you contact one of our team members for assistance. Log into the password protected portion of the website, send us an email or give one of our team a call. We want to help you establish a safe, self-sufficient culture for your people. Customers may wish to take advantage of our Safety Tool Box Talks or Written Safety Plans. We can also answer questions regarding specific safety information postings as well as help you share the information with your employees.
For more information on how R.A.M.P. can help your company, meet our professionals.
Find your state’s required documents on State Postings and Forms page. Simply click on your state to download and print the resources.