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AVOID GETTING THE SHOCK OF  Don't touch electrical equipment if you have wet

hands, you are near a source of moisture or you are


YOUR LIFE standing on a damp floor.
 At work or at home, make sure you are protected
by a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) for
Look around you. In today's offices there are outlets that are outdoors or near moisture.
photocopiers, fax machines, computers, printers, light  Don't use an "octopus" connection for several
switches, outlets, extension cords, water coolers and extension cords because the increased demand on
coffeepots. It's hard to think of any job that doesn't the electrical outlet can be a fire and shock hazard.
require the use of electricity. When it comes right down Usually the fire will start inside the wall and become
to it, we must avoid electrical hazards in almost any very hot and dangerous long before you know there
work setting. is a problem.
Electrical shock occurs when electricity takes a  Use multi-plug outlet strips for connecting
short cut through your body. It can cause severe burns. computers, printers and monitors. Make sure the
It can stop your breathing. It can affect your brain, rated capacity for the strip is not exceeded. They
nerves, heart and other organs. And it can be fatal. normally have a built-in overload circuit breaker.
 If you do have an electrical fire, call the fire
Here are some ways to avoid electrical shock: department and sound the fire alarm. If possible,
turn off the main source of power and attempt to
 Keep electrical cords away from traffic areas and put the fire out if it is a very small one.
heat or water sources that could damage the
 Use only the proper fire extinguisher (Type C) on an
insulation and create a shock hazard. Don't use an
electrical fire. If you are not sure whether it is the
extension cord as a replacement for permanent
correct Type C - don't use it. Instead get out of the
wiring. Never use cords that are cracked, damaged,
building. Never use water or other liquids on an
broken or have the third prong of the plug
electrical fire because you could receive a deadly
removed.
shock.
 Never try to do repairs to any electrical equipment
unless you are trained and authorized. Instead,
report any defects to your supervisor.
 Always observe all warning signs about electricity.
They are there for a good reason.
 Don't pull on the cord when disconnecting an
appliance from an electrical source. Always pull on
the plug instead.
 When cleaning equipment or an appliance, always
disconnect it from the source of power.
BACK TIPS FOR EVERYONE
• Always move your feet rather than twisting your body to
Many back injuries result from incorrect lifting. change directions.
Lifting large or heavy objects is not the only way you can
injure your back. Unless you use safe techniques, picking • Plan ahead for unloading. An ideal spot would be at
up even a small article can cause a painful injury. waist height to prevent unnecessary bending.

Here are a few tips to help prevent back injuries: • To unload, crouch down and use your thigh muscles to
lower the object. Keep your back straight, and the article
• First, size up the load. There are several ways that you held close to your body while unloading. Occasionally an
can do this. One method is to look at the weight label on object may be too heavy for one person to pick up. Don’t
the carton or package. Another method is to lift one try to be a hero. There are several ways that you can lift a
corner to gauge the weight. This will give you an idea of difficult load.
what you are up against — before you start the lift.
• Ask a co-worker to assist you. Try to find someone who is
• Next, do a few stretching exercises to warm up your about your height. This will make the lift easier to do.
back, arm, and leg muscles. Cold, stiff muscles can be
easily injured. • When two or more people are involved in a lift, decide
ahead of time who is the team leader. This person is
• Then, plan your route. Make sure you know where you responsible for giving commands such as “lift,” “move”
are going with the object and check the route for and “set down”. Coordination of movements will prevent
obstacles. If you have to walk quite a distance with your sudden starts or stops, and changes in weight distribution.
load, pre-plan spots where you can easily stop for a short
rest. But, a better solution is to use a hand truck for long • Use mechanical assistance such as a hand truck or pallet
distances. mover. But, before you use this equipment, make sure you
know how to properly operate it. Ask your supervisor for
• Protect your hands. Examine the load for sharp edges, assistance if you don’t know the correct procedures.
metal staples or leaks. Wear gloves if necessary, especially
for protection from excessively hot or cold objects. • To pick up an awkward object, such as a sack, bend at
the knees and grasp it at opposite corners. Gradually
• Lift the object right. Get close to the article and center straighten your legs and push yourself up. Remember to
your body over your feet. Bend your knees, and keep your hold the load close to your body and at about waist height.
spine straight. Grasp the package. Use your stronger leg Although we have only covered the basics, you should be
muscles to push yourself upright. able to adapt these tips to everything that you lift.
Remember to think it through before you lift. Plan your
• As you start the lift, raise your eyes and look ahead. This moves, and limber up your muscles frequently during the
will keep your spine in correct alignment. day.

• Keep the load close to your body to exert less force on


your back.

• Make sure you can clearly see over the load. If your
vision is blocked you may trip and fall.
 Is noise a concern?
TAKE A SUREFOOTED  Will the area have heavy traffic?
 What equipment must the floor hold?
APPROACH TOWARDS SLIPS,  How will the floor be cleaned?
 Are aesthetic effects a concern?
TRIPS AND FALLS Various non-skid floor coatings that increase traction also are
available. Carpets provide good traction but can cause falls if they are
A slapstick comedian slips on a banana peel and the audience laughs. worn or do not fit tightly. Make sure rug and runner edges are securely
A schoolchild falls as he walks to the blackboard and another student asks, bound and beveled with rubber or plastic to avoid catching on shoes or
“Have a good trip?” The jokes are familiar, but slips are no laughing matter. boots.
They take a heavy toll in the number of workplace injuries and lost Slip-resistant mats provide added protection in spots where spills
workdays. Falls to the same level are one of the most common causes of are likely, such as in areas with heavy traffic or where customers and
injuries on the job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. employees may track in water and dirt. Typical places for mats are at
entrances to hotels and restaurants, around equipment that sprays water,
in service aisles of restaurants, in produce sections of grocery stores and
Investigate slips
on bathroom floors.
Some mats are made to direct water, grease and other spills away
The incidence of slips, trips and falls at work may be even
from the walking surface. An added benefit of mats is they can relieve
higher than the numbers show. Workers do not report many of the
back and leg strain.
incidents because they are minor and make them appear clumsy, which is
a mistake. To reduce slips, trips and falls, managers should stress the
Take control with training
seriousness of all incidents and have employees inform them of even
the most harmless ones. Minor incidents that are reported may be clues
to troublesome areas needing repairs and may actually help prevent a Environmental changes alone cannot protect employees and
major incident from occurring. guests. To further reduce the risk of falls, employees should check that
Investigations should focus on the following areas, where most aisles are clear, floors are clean, signs are present to warn people of
incidents occur: slippery areas, and that guests get the assistance they need.
 Doorways and other transitional areas Managers should stress these safety reminders:
 Ramps  If you drop it, pick it up
 Cluttered hallways  If you spill it, wipe it up
 Areas with heavy traffic  Go where you are looking, and look where you are going
Not all falls occur because of wet floors, cluttered aisles or
 Uneven surfaces
missed steps. There are behavioral changes that can be
 Any area prone to wetness or spills
learned to reduce the risk of falls or minimize their impact
As long as people move spills will occur, but a variety of products
such as:
can reduce the chances that they will cause a fall. Some of the most
 Walking techniques that use feet as probes
popular products to reduce the risk of falls are slip-resistant floors, mats
and footwear. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s  How to balance properly by keeping the head up and
guidelines on walking and working surfaces call for slip-resistant floor maintaining the body’s natural center of gravity
surfaces in work areas that are generally slippery because of wet, oily or  Ways to get the feet underneath quickly to recover balance
dirty operations. OSHA also says workers should wear slip-resistant after an initial slip
footwear to reduce slipping hazards.  How to protect the most vulnerable parts of the body, such as
the head and spine, if you do fall
Pick the right floor Whether companies implement behavioral, environmental or
a combination of measures to reduce slips, trips and falls, their incident
rates usually decline.
The appropriate floor covering depends on its use. Here are
some questions to consider when choosing an appropriate floor:
What kinds of spills are likely?
 What are the sanitary requirements?
If you know you are allergic to bees or wasps, always carry
TAKE THE STING OUT your prescription of adrenaline with you. A pre-loaded
syringe or "pen" of adrenaline is the easiest to use. Watch
closely for any reaction, such as tightness of the throat,
OF AN INSECT BITE difficulty breathing, numbness and tingling in the stung
limb, or large blotchy areas of swelling. Use the adrenaline
Indoors or outdoors, insects and other pests can and then get to medical aid immediately. If you have never
distract you from your task. Whether you swat at a had an allergic reaction following an insect bite, and you
mosquito, dodge a bee, or pull your hand back from a start experiencing any of the above symptoms after a bite,
spider's nest, "bugs" can cause accidents. Their bites or seek medical care right away.
stings can range from annoying to painful to dangerous or
fatal. Here's a quick course on how to stay out of trouble For less severe bites and stings:
with insects and other pests.
- Keep first aid supplies handy when out-of-doors or in
How to avoid trouble with insects: areas infested by insects.
- Apply ice or lots of cold water to the bite to reduce the
- Wear long-sleeved light-colored clothing with the shirt swelling and itching.
collars buttoned up and pant cuffs tucked into your boots - Use spray-on antihistamines or hydrocortisone-based
or socks. creams to relieve the itching of minor bites.
- Use gloves when working outdoors, in old deserted - Carefully remove ticks with tweezers. If you pull the tick
buildings, in dark corners, and at demolition sites where out carelessly, the tick's head can remain imbedded in the
spiders, wasps or other pests may be present. skin. Wash the area well with soap and water.
- Wear a net if you are working in insect-infested areas and - And finally: Don't use cologne, perfume, after-shave or
use an insect repellent on any exposed skin. other products which may entice the insects. And don't
- Spray badly infested areas before starting work. If swat at flying insects because your movements may cause
indoors, spray and then ventilate the space before them to become excited and bite or sting you. Instead,
entering the space. move away from the problem.
- Check your skin and clothing after the task is completed
for any hitch-hiking pests.

Severe reactions to bites and stings:

Serious reactions to bites of certain spiders,


insects or ticks can create medical problems. Take flu-like
symptoms seriously. A headache, stiff neck, fever and
aching joints could indicate the tick was carrying Lyme
disease. Anyone suffering from these symptoms should be
checked by medical personnel.
If the person is complaining of stomach pain,
sore muscles, tender feet, swollen eyelids, excessive saliva
or sweating, the cause might be a black widow spider bite.
A more severe reaction includes paralysis of the chest
muscles. Get this person to the hospital immediately. In
severe cases of reaction you may have to start CPR
(cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and rescue breathing to
help the victim.
 Don't assume a worker
DO’s AND DON’T’s OF understands what you said

SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS  Don't get bogged down in


excessive detail. Keep everything
simple.
DO:
WHY IT MATTERS:
 Be specific. Tell the employee exactly what's
expected of him or her. Telling someone to be  Trained employees are safer employees.
careful is too general. Instead, say “turn off  Employees look to you for their safety
the machine before removing the guard”, or instructions.
“use this tool for the job”.
 Be confident. If you're sure of yourself and
convey that feeling, you'll inspire respect and You need to follow effective communication
compliance from your employees. You can't techniques—both oral and written—to ensure that
act confidently if you are not fully versed on the safety message and instructions are understood
the safety procedures for every job in your and applied by your employees.
area of responsibility.
 Repeat the instructions. Employees can
misunderstand instructions when someone
gives them orally and speaks quickly. Also,
English may be a second language for some
workers. That's why it is important to repeat
the instructions several times. Then ask the
employees to explain what you just told them.
You can even ask them to demonstrate what
you just said.
 Check to make sure. Next time you pass the
area, make a point of observing if employees
are carrying out your instructions. Correct
them on the spot if they are not complying
fully.

Here are some things to avoid when giving


instructions.

DON'T:

 Don't give conflicting instructions.