No worker wants to get hurt or sick while doing their job. Illness or injury causes employees to miss work and suffer from painful conditions that require medical attention. This can be uncomfortable, stressful and frustrating.
Therefore, minimizing the scenarios and conditions that can cause an accident or exposure to hazardous conditions is crucial. One way employers can do this, according to an article from Occupational Health & Safety, is to properly train workers to identify and respond to emergency situations.
Types of emergencies
While it is not possible to plan for every type of accident or emergency that may arise in the workplace, there are some that are more likely occur or more dangerous than others. These include:
- Chemical spills
- Emergency weather including blizzards, hurricanes and tornadoes
- Workplace violence
- Mechanical failures
These are events that can affect any New Jersey workplace. Without preparation and training for what to do in these types of situations, employees can suffer serious or fatal injuries.
Among the suggestions in the article are directions to provide every employee with information on what to do in the event of an alarm. Employees should also be aware of where alarms are in the workplace and which type of alarm may indicate an emergency, from visual and audible alarms to additional warnings, like text messages.
Employees should know if and to where they should evacuate, how to account for safe transport and who will be responsible for shutting down equipment or securing certain areas.
Employers should also be sure that emergency exits and evacuation routes are marked properly. These precautions can prevent confusion as well as other workplace accidents, like slipping and falling during an evacuation.
Emergency preparedness through drills and training may seem like a low priority for employers. However, these measures can save lives and prevent chaos in dangerous situations. We cannot always predict emergencies or workplace disasters, but employers can and should plan for the worst and train employees accordingly. Doing so can minimize serious injuries and potentially save lives.