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Are You Aware Of These 6 Types Of Workplace Hazards?

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Are You Aware Of These 6 Types Of Workplace Hazards? by Kenyans247(1): Thu 31, December, 2020 02:19pm
Hazards exist in every workplace, but how do you know which ones have the most potential to harm workers? By identifying hazards at your workplace, you will be better prepared to control or eliminate them and prevent accidents, injuries, property damage and downtime.

Firstly, a key step in any safety protocol is to conduct a thorough hazard assessment of all work environments and equipment. Before getting started with the list below, we encourage you to download a copy of our Hazard Assessment Guide.

You can walk through the steps necessary to set up your own hazard assessment and print out our supplied blank worksheet for your own workplace hazard assessment. In a hazard assessment, it is important to be as thorough as possible because after all, you can’t protect your workers against hazards you are unaware of. Avoid blind spots in your workplace safety procedures by taking into consideration these six main categories of workplace hazards.

Safety Hazards:
Safety Hazards are unsafe working conditions that that can cause injury, illness, and death. Safety hazards are the most common workplace hazards.

THEY INCLUDE:
Anything that can cause spills or be tripping such as cords running across the floor or ice
Anything that can cause falls such as working from heights, including ladders, scaffolds, roofs, or any raised work area
Unguarded machinery and moving machinery parts that a worker can accidentally touch
Electrical hazards like frayed cords, missing ground pins, improper wiring
Confined Spaces

Biological Hazards:
Biological Hazards include exposure to harm or disease associated with working with animals, people, or infectious plant materials. Workplaces with these kinds of hazards include, but are not limited to, work in schools, daycare facilities, colleges and universities, hospitals, laboratories, emergency response, nursing homes, or various outdoor occupations.

TYPES OF THINGS YOU MAY BE EXPOSED TO INCLUDE:

Blood and other body fluids
Fungi/mold
Bacteria and viruses
Plants
Insect Bites
Animal and bird droppings
Physical Hazards:
Physical hazards can be any factors within the environment that can harm the body without necessarily touching it.

THEY INCLUDE:

Radiation: including ionizing, non-ionizing (EMF’s, microwaves, radio waves, etc.)
High exposure to sunlight/ultraviolet rays
Temperature extremes – hot and cold
Constant loud noise
Ergonomic Hazards:
Occur when the type of work, body positions, and working conditions put a strain on your body. They are the hardest to spot since you don’t always immediately notice the strain on your body or the harm that these hazards pose. Short-term exposure may result in “sore muscles” the next day or in the days following the exposure, but long-term exposure can result in serious long-term illness.

ERGONOMIC HAZARDS INCLUDE:

Improperly adjusted workstations and chairs
Frequent lifting
Poor posture
Awkward movements, especially if they are repetitive
Having to use too much force, especially if you have to do it frequently
Vibration
Chemical Hazards:
Are present when a worker is exposed to any chemical preparation in the workplace in any form (solid, liquid or gas). Some are safer than others, but to some workers who are more sensitive to chemicals, even common solutions can cause illness, skin irritation, or breathing problems.

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BEWARE OF:

Liquids like cleaning products, paints, acids, solvents – ESPECIALLY if chemicals are in an unlabeled container!
Vapors and fumes that come from welding or exposure to solvents
Gases like acetylene, propane, carbon monoxide and helium
Flammable materials like gasoline, solvents, and explosive chemicals
Pesticides
Work Organization Hazards:
Hazards or stressors that cause stress (short-term effects) and strain (long-term effects). These are hazards associated with workplace issues such as workload, lack of control and/or respect, etc.

EXAMPLES INCLUDE:

Workload demands
Workplace violence
Intensity and/or pace
Respect (or lack thereof)
Flexibility
Control or say about things
Social support or relations
Sexual harassment
Remember that these lists are non-exhaustive. When you are completing a workplace hazard assessment, take into account these six larger categories to think of factors that may affect your workers in their particular circumstances.

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