Free PPE Guide from Graphic Products Lists 12 Major Workplace Hazard Categories and Required PPE for Each Category

By Jack Rubinger,, 503-469-3024

Safety in the workplace is easy to neglect but the price of doing so can be high. Think increased Worker’s Comp and debilitating injuries. Certain procedures have been proven to increase workplace safety. So if you’re serious about safety, conduct an Industrial Facility Safety Audit at your workplace.  One reason? In the U.S. in 2005, OSHA conducted more than 38,700 inspections and over 85,000 violations were issued – almost half were un-programmed or surprise inspections.

Getting Started

Have you stopped and thought about facility-wide safety? If so, what activities were checked and implemented?  The following criteria should determine the task prioritization:

  • ·Accident frequency and severity
  • ·Potential for severe injuries and illness
  • ·New jobs
  • ·Infrequently performed jobs

Encourage co-workers to get on board with safety. Take a closer look at your facility and equipment. Then, re-read all the applicable documentation and chat with coworkers who work in these areas.

When evaluating the facility, assess the following:

  • ·Are workers wearing appropriate PPE – hard hats, boots, reflective vests?
  • ·Warehouse signage. Hazardous carbon monoxide fumes may be present around loading docks and forklifts. Clear all aisles for better traffic flow.
  • · Go through chemical storage areas. Look for spills, exposure to flammable materials, proper air flow and leaks.
  • ·Maintenance shops must be examined for chemicals hazards such as gas, solvents and cleaning supplies and possible electrical (arc flash) and mechanical hazards that need to be identified.
  • ·Ensure large format RTK and arc flash labels (6” x 9” and larger) are used in locations where greater visibility is needed.
  • · Turn off and lock out energy sources when machines are serviced to prevent accidents. Energy sources that can’t be locked out must be tagged out.
  • ·Buildings must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Life Safety Code 101. Check exits and restrooms for proper and required signage.
  • ·Conduct a Job Hazard Analysis (JHA).

Consultant James Pryor has conducted and been on the receiving end of many industrial facility safety audits. “The JHA, if conducted properly, is the single most important tool in preventing accidents,” explained Pryor.

JHA steps include:

  • ·Selecting job to be analyzed
  • ·Breaking job into sequences
  • ·Identifying hazards
  • ·Determining preventive measures to overcome hazards

It doesn’t help to develop a to-do list that winds up on a manager’s shelf. Safety action plans should be a work in progress. After the audit has been conducted and changes and corrections have been made, document the following in a safety log book and make it available:

  • ·Have injuries decreased?
  • ·Has exposure to potential hazards decreased?
  • ·Have attitudes changed? This is hard to gauge unless surveys and open discussions are conducted and recorded.
  • ·Have changes been made to increase safety?

While an industrial facility safety audit should result in a mutually-agreeable number of restorative phases to apply, consider this: Do you feel safe at work? If the answer “no,” then you’ve got your work cut out for you.

# # #

Texas America Safety Company and Blog4Safety wish to thank Jack for these instructions on how to keep your workers safe and compliant.  We appreciate the information and hope you will think about following his instructions for a safe workplace. 


Comments are closed.