Over the years, The Office has given us plenty of chaotic, but of course, laugh-out-loud hilarious safety situations, among other hysterical moments . We can laugh at these situations on TV, but in our real lives and workplaces, we should do everything possible to prevent these things from happening. If you’ve seen the show, you know you shouldn’t take your safety cues from Michael or Dwight, because they aren’t always the most competent coworkers.
As The Office comes to a close this month at the end of its 9th season, let’s take a look back at some memorable workplace safety moments from the show and learn the proper ways these situations should be handled should similar things happen when you’re at work.
General Workplace Safety
We know that TV shows don’t always show us the correct way to do things in real life. The Office is a great example of how not to run your office, especially when it comes to workplace safety. In the episode titled “Safety Training” from season 3, the workers in the office get a lesson on being safe in their warehouse. Michael makes jokes throughout warehouse worker Darryl’s whole presentation instead of being attentive.
In episode, “Boys and Girls,” also from season three, Michael drives the forklift, even though he doesn’t have a license to operate it, and knocks over entire shelves in the warehouse. This clip is a prime example of what not to do if you’re not qualified.
Tips for general safety in the workplace: At your job, you likely have regular safety meetings. If you don’t have meetings and guidelines to follow, take matters into your own hands and learn how you can start implementing better workplace safety to keep yourself and your coworkers free from harm. Always pay attention during safety session because workplace safety is not something to take lightly.
In the hilariously ridiculous cold open clip for “Stress Relief” in season 5, Dwight actually sets a fire and locks everyone inside the office on purpose to stress the importance of fire safety at work. The motive behind Dwight’s fire, to make everyone pay attention to safety lessons, is pure, but obviously setting a fire on purpose is something we should never do. The fire situation ends up with Oscar falling through the ceiling, Angela throwing her cat into the ceiling, Dwight setting off firecrackers and with Stanley having a real heart attack; funny for TV, but not something you want to happen where you work.
In another episode about fires at work, the season 3 episode, “The Fire,” viewers learn more ways that these situations should not be handled. You know the saying, “The captain goes down with the ship,” meaning that the captain or leader should make sure everyone else is okay before being the last one out in a dangerous situation. In The Office, this is not the case. A small fire is started in the break room, and the workers begin to calmly exit but branch manager Michael pushes everyone else aside so he can run down the stairs first.
Tips to prevent fire situations at work: This situation could have clearly been avoided by Dwight not setting the fire. Instead, have a simple fire safety class and run a practice drill every few months with no real fire, Dwight! In case of a fire at your office, be sure to act quickly and calmly and exit the building according to your planned fire procedures.
Since the very beginning of The Office in 2005, viewers have been treated to countless memorable moments and scenes we’ll never forget. Even after the finale, the beloved show and workers of the Dunder Mifflin Scranton branch will live on in our hearts. Just remember not to take any safety tips from The Office!
Bio: Eddie D. Shackleford is a writer who loves to write and research about parenting, children, safety and more. You can follow Eddie on Twitter at @Eddie20Ford.