Chapter 20 Providing a Safe and Healthy Work Environment

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Chapter 20 Providing a Safe and Healthy Work Environment

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1. 1 Chapter 20 Providing a Safe and Healthy Work Environment

2. 2 Safety and Accident Prevention Approximately 8 out of every 100 American employees in the private sector suffer an injury or illness This is due to hazards in the work environment Around 3.4 million employees suffered disabling injuries in 2003 In the same year, there were 4,500 deaths

3. 3 Supervisor Responsibility for Safety A successful safety program starts at the top of the organization, but the supervisor is key because of daily contact with employees The supervisor must see that safety directives are carried out Supervisors shape safety attitudes

4. 4 Supervisor Responsibility for Safety Supervisor responsibilities: Listen to employee complaints and suggestions Investigate and take corrective action Develop a good relationship with the safety director or engineer Consult with this person on any safety-related issues that arise

5. 5 Supervisor Responsibility for Safety Safety instruction should be an integral part of orienting and training employees Supervisors may also be responsible for: Accident investigation First aid Maintenance of safety records Dissemination of changes in safety regulations and methods

6. 6 The Cost of Accidents The costs of work-related accidents are high Most costs are related to lost production Training replacements is a related cost Insurance and medical costs are increasing due to large accident claims This includes workers’ compensation, health, accident, and disability insurance Criminal charges are possible in cases of long-standing poor safety records

7. 7 Workers’ Compensation Workers’ compensation protects the employee from loss of income and extra expenses of work-related injuries Several states allow payments for job-related anxiety, depression, and mental disorders Some form of workers’ compensation is available in all 50 states Coverage, amounts paid, and ease of collecting vary from state to state

8. 8 Health Insurance Health insurance covers such things as: Hospitalization and outpatient doctor bills Prescription drugs Dental, eye, and mental health case

9. 9 Disability Insurance Disability insurance protects the employee during a long-term or permanent disability A waiting period following the disability is usually required Benefits are usually calculated as a percentage of wages or salary Organizations with a good safety and health record pay lower rates

10. 10 Related Costs Employee morale suffers in an unsafe environment Reactions range from refusal to work to an unconscious slowdown Organizations with a bad safety reputation may have to pay higher wages Group harmony may be impaired by the absence of the injured employee

11. 11 Related Costs If employees perceive that management is unconcerned with their welfare, employee- management relations can deteriorate Safety is often a primary reason for unionizing

12. 12 The Causes of Accidents Accidents are usually a combination of: Unsafe personal acts An unsafe physical environment Both

13. 13 Unsafe Personal Acts Unsafe acts cause up to 80 percent of all workplace accidents Horseplay Taking shortcuts Throwing materials Operating equipment too fast Taking unnecessary chances Failing to wear or use protective equipment Using improper tools and equipment

14. 14 Unsafe Personal Acts Why do employees commit unsafe acts? Trying to impress others or project a certain image Fatigue Haste Boredom or daydreaming Stress Poor eyesight Physical limitations

15. 15 Physical Environment Accidents happen in all types of environments In order of decreasing frequency, they include: Wherever heavy, awkward material is handled, using hand trucks, forklifts, cranes, hoists Around any machinery used to produce something else Where people walk or climb Where hand tools are used Where electricity is used for something other than lighting

16. 16 Physical Environment Physical conditions that result in more accidents Serious understaffing or not having enough people to do the job safely Unguarded or improperly guarded machines Poor housekeeping Defective equipment and tools Poor lighting Poor or improper ventilation Improper dress

17. 17 Physical Environment Some specific safety hazards: Slippery floors Cluttered aisles and stairs Reading while walking Power and extension cords Loose tile, linoleum, or carpeting Small, loose objects left on the floor Bottles, cans, and books on the floor or stacked on top of filing cabinets or windowsills Sharp burrs on edges of material

18. 18 Accident Proneness A tendency to be accident-prone should not be used to justify an accident Employees who appear to be accident-prone should be identified and given special attention Under the right circumstances, anyone can be temporarily accident-prone A “normal” employee who was up all night with a sick child

19. 19 Measuring Safety Frequency and severity are the most widely accepted measures of an organization’s safety record A frequency rate indicates the frequency with which disabling injuries occur A severity rate indicates how severe the accidents were and how long the injured were out of work Disabling (lost time) injuries cause the employee to miss one or more days of work

20. 20 The Safety Program The heart of any safety program is accident prevention and getting employees to “think safety” The basic elements of a successful safety program: Support of top and middle management Safety is a line organization responsibility A positive attitude toward safety exists and is maintained throughout the organization One person is in charge of the safety program and is responsible for its operation

21. 21 Strategies for Promoting Safety Make work interesting Incorporate ergonomics Establish a safety committee Feature employee safety contests Publicize safety statistics Periodically hold safety training sessions Use bulletin boards and email Reward employee participation

22. 22 How Supervisors Can Prevent Accidents Be familiar with organizational policies that relate to safety Be familiar with the proper procedures for safely accomplishing the work Know what safety devices and personal protective equipment should be used on each job Know what safety-related reports and records are required Get to know the employees Know when and where to make safety inspections

23. 23 How Supervisors Can Prevent Accidents Learn to take the advice of the safety director and the safety committee Know what to do in case of an accident Know the proper procedures for investigating an accident and determining how it could have been prevented Always set a good example with regard to safety

24. 24 Violence in the Workplace Violence in the workplace is becoming an increasing concern Violence accounts for 11 percent of all fatal work injuries Violence is the second leading cause of workplace fatalities for women and the third for all employees In 18 percent of all violent crimes, the victims are at work The threat of terrorism in the workplace has become a reality

25. 25 Deterring Workplace Violence Hire carefully, but realistically Draw up a plan and involve employees in it As part of the plan, adopt a “zero tolerance” policy Enlist the aid of professionals—with an eye on the cost

26. 26 Warning Signs of Violence Making threats or being threatened Being terminated or anticipating a lay off Having serious problems at home Chemical dependency Showing signs of paranoia A fascination with weapons Getting into fights and/or demonstrating open conflict Demonstrating a loner mentality Making fatalistic statements

27. 27 Occupational Safety and Health Act The purpose of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) is “to assure, so far as possible, every working man and woman in the nation safe and healthful working conditions and to preserve our human resources It is enforced by a division of the U.S. Dept. of Labor, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration This act covers nearly all businesses with one or more employees

28. 28 Occupational Safety and Health Act Worker rights under OSHA: You may tell your employer or OSHA about workplace hazards You may request an OSHA inspection You can file a complaint with OSHA if your employer has discriminated against you for exercising your rights under the OSHA act The right to see OSHA citations issued to your employer

29. 29 Occupational Safety and Health Act Worker rights under OSHA: Your employer must correct workplace hazards and certify that the hazards have been reduced or eliminated The right to copies of your medical records or records of your exposure to toxic and harmful substances Your OSHA rights must be posted in your workplace

30. 30 Occupational Safety and Health Act Under OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration: Encourages employers and employees to reduce workplace hazards and to implement new (or improve existing) safety and health management programs Develops mandatory job safety and health standards and enforces them through worksite inspections, employer assistance, by imposing citations and/or penalties

31. 31 Occupational Safety and Health Act Promotes safe, healthful work environments through cooperative programs, partnerships, and alliances Establishes responsibilities and rights for employers and employees Supports the development of innovative ways of dealing with workplace hazards Maintains a reporting and record-keeping system to monitor job-related injuries/illnesses

32. 32 Occupational Safety and Health Act Establishes training programs for occupational safety and health personnel Provides technical and compliance assistance, training, and education to help employers reduce worker accidents and injuries Partners with states that operate their own occupational safety and health programs

33. 33 Occupational Safety and Health Act Few people question the intent of OSHA, but many criticize the way in which it is implemented The volume of regulations is staggering Many regulations have vague wording Some regulations are seen as petty Consequently, legislation has softened or eliminated some OSHA requirements Regardless, OSHA has been effective; occupational fatality rates have dropped by 62%

34. 34 The Supervisor and OSHA Employers of 11 or more persons must maintain records of occupational injuries and illnesses as they occur This includes all: Occupational illnesses, regardless of severity Injuries resulting in death, lost workdays, restriction of work or motion, loss of consciousness, transfer to another job, or medical treatment other than first aid This record keeping and reporting responsibility generally falls on the supervisor

35. 35 OSHA Forms Currently required OSHA forms: Form 300, Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses Form 300A, Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses Form 301, Injury and Illness Incident Report These forms are maintained on a calendar-year basis They must be retained for five years and be available for inspection

36. 36 OSHA Inspections Supervisors are often asked to accompany OSHA officials during facility inspections It is in the organization’s best interests to be cooperative Being uncooperative can result in stricter enforcement and stiffer penalties Become familiar with the OSHA regulations affecting your department and be constantly on the lookout for violations

37. 37 Hazard Communications Standard Millions of U.S. employees are potentially exposed to chemical hazards in the workplace To protect them, OSHA established a Hazard Communications Standard (right to know rule) It attempts to ensure that employees know what chemical hazards exist in the workplace and how to protect themselves against them

38. 38 Hazard Communications Standard This standard has three requirements: Hazard determination Hazard communication Employee training Identifying the hazards posed by a particular chemical rests with the manufacturer Employers using the chemicals are responsible for meeting hazard communication standards and for teaching employees to use them safely

39. 39 Hazard Communications Standard Material Safety Data Sheets Provide information on the nature of hazards, including appropriate handling methods and remedies for unexpected exposure May be prepared by employers, manufacturers, or importers of the hazardous material Are often maintained electronically, which makes it easier to keep them current

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