Category Archives: Hand Protection

How to Move Heavy Construction Equipment Safely

How to Move Heavy Construction Equipment Safely

Image source:

Moving heavy construction equipment is no easy task, that too safe and sound! Each year, quite a many workers end up endangering their lives just because of incorrectly handling heavy equipment and eventually succumb to it.

When it comes to moving heavy industrial machinery, it is imperative that all the safety measures are taken into full consideration to avoid any mishap and that no worker’s life gets jeopardized in any way. In fact, safety should and must be the first and foremost priority, and there should be a proper guideline issued to every worker before the work begins.

Hence, we have vowed to put forward in this post, at least the basics, to ensure worker’s safety.

One may have the know-how of a specific thing, but it is the professional guideline which provides the full information and guides regarding the dynamics. Expert guidance is often brushed off and only taken into consideration when a calamity strikes which should not be the case. In fact, it should be the very first preference before beginning with the task of moving to avoid any disaster or mishap as mentioned earlier.

Mock Training Sessions:

Training is the fulcrum to succeed or excel in any field.  Similarly, investing time as well as capital in training is pivotal to ensure the safety of workers. It is highly essential to be acquainted with the skill set and knowledge associated with the moving of heavy construction equipment, and that could only come through training under the supervision of experts. In addition to this, it is essential to know about the machine specifications (weight, attachments, etc.) beforehand so that moving does not seem something as an unachievable task, which is, by all means, natural.

Appropriate Clothing:

Just like there is prescribed attire for every social gathering, the task of moving heavy construction equipment also requires a proper dress code. While the former is to maintain the sanctity of the event, the latter is to ensure safety.

For example, make sure to avoid loose shirts or baggy pants as they can result in serious accidents, say perhaps by being caught in machines or coming in the way of others and resulting in a fall or trip. Other than this, strictly avoid wearing any type of jewelry.

Also, it is often reported that the majority of the accidents occur due to the negligence of workers – more importantly, the failure to wear proper clothing. It should be noted that while doing such a crucial task, it is rudimentary to have a uniform to wear. The dress should be High-visibility safety apparel (HVSA), and the footwear should be steel-toed boots.

Communication and Blind Spots:

Effective communication is an ultimate key to success in nearly every aspect of life as well as work. Two-Way radio or walkie-talkie can come handy when it comes to having constant communication.

It is with the help of continuous exchange of information only that one can closely monitor the blind spots and minimize the risks and hazards associated with this daunting work of moving heavy construction equipment.

In addition to this, it is crucial to forming a nexus with the spotter so that the potential threats could be detected in time should there be anyone between or behind the blind spot.

Do not ever have any assumptions that the people around the workspace know your next move. It is part of your task to formally put out instructions that no one is to come within the boundaries of the moving process.

Do Not Rush:

It is entirely understandable how stressful meeting deadlines can be, and in the pursuit of these deadlines, one often ends up working haphazardly and unintentionally inviting danger. For example, moving equipment in haste is never a smart idea.

An expert is not someone who carries the task in lesser time, but who does it smartly within the allotted time frame while ensuring the safety of everyone involved.

Remain focused and do not let the stress overpower you. It is advised to take the time and devise strategies beforehand as to how the deadlines must be met with minimal risks. A careful pre-planning in combination with professional advice would bring up fewer problems during the process.

Know Your Machines:

Before using any machinery as an aid in moving the equipment, learn its usage well enough to avoid any catastrophe. Adequate information about the machine is of paramount importance. Make it a point to ensure that it is serviced and no old or faulty components are being used.

It is recommended that the equipment should be turned off when refueling or repairing. Moreover, keep it under strict notice that both equipment and attachments are regularly inspected to keep track of the fact that it is and shall continue to be safe to use. Most importantly, do not shy away from taking the expert advice in case there is any confusion as to how to use a specific machine or any query regarding machine safety. Keeping a staunch check on little things can lead to the safe completion of the task.

Hire Professional Movers:

Moving heavy industrial equipment is not and can never be everyone’s cup of tea. If you think you cannot tackle and might end up creating a mess, we strongly advise you to seek professional help. Being wise, after all, is the best option. Putting oneself in uncomfortable shoes is the most absurd thing to indulge in.

It is a general perception that professional movers only caters to the carrying and lifting of the machines which is not true. From making an inventory list, packing, organizing to securely loading as well as unloading later is what they do and that too with sheer expertise. A reliable commercial mover can also help you move office furniture including desks, cabinets and cubicles.

Right from the start till the end of the day, the professional movers renders an immaculate service which obviously won’t be possible when dealing it all on own. They see things which an amateur like you might miss and ensure that not even a single critical aspect gets overlooked during relocation.  Not to mention the added peace and satisfaction which would drive in, seeing everything taken care of exceptionally well!

 

 

 

Recommended Gear for Best Workplace Safety

Why is protective equipment important in a workplace? What kind of gear does it include? There are certain jobs where safety gear is not only recommended but also required. Here is all you need to know to stay as safe as possible.

Why Is Protective Equipment Important at a Workplace?

When it comes to workplaces and job sites, safety should always come first. Personal safety should never be compromised or dismissed in favor of some other aspects of the job, such as the financial, for example. Safety or protective gear keeps the entire project running more smoothly, and allows everything to be done more efficiently and without the unnecessary hazards. Workplace injuries happen often, but can be prevented and decreased in number if proper precautions are taken.

All businesses and business owners in the sectors that require it, such as construction, for example, should adhere to the rules and safety regulations and provide their workers with the corresponding personal protective equipment (PPE). This way, the workers are protected, a possibility of injuries and illnesses is significantly decreased, and the businesses and companies can avoid potential disputes, liability issues, or even lawsuits.

The recommended gear that ensures best workplace safety includes equipment such as hard hats or protective helmets, safety glasses or goggles, work gloves, safety footwear, face mask, respirator, earmuffs or earplugs, coveralls, vest, etc. Depending on the nature of the job and workplace, workers should wear some or most of them.

Protective Gear for the Head, Eyes and Face

When it comes to a head, it is the most important part of your body that should be protected. It also includes some of the most critical and delicate parts such as eyes and ears, what is also a priority when it comes to safety and protecting them properly. The safety gear includes head protection, hearing protection, eye and face protection, and respiratory protection. Here are some of the basic pieces of equipment.

Hard Hats/Protective Helmets

Protective helmets keep workers safe from any possible head injury at a workplace, such as any kind of impact, and flying or falling objects, as well as from burns and electrical shock.

Earplugs/Earmuffs

Whenever there is a possibility of some hearing damage, when the noise levels or the duration of exposure to that noise cannot be reduced, the workers are required to have some kind of protection for their ears, such as earplugs.

Safety Glasses and Face Masks

These pieces of PPE are required whenever there is a risk of exposure to some dangerous chemicals, flying particles, gases, vapors, and any dangerous liquids that could cause damage to the eyes or other parts of the face and skin.

Protective Gear for Feet and Legs

Safety equipment for your feet and legs is also of great importance, especially if your workplace involves walking on unstable objects, hazardous surfaces, or working at heights. Protective footwear is designed to prevent major injuries such as falling and slipping, electrical hazards, sharp objects, heavy objects falling on the foot, etc.

Working at heights, for example, should involve slip-resistant shoes, i.e., shoes with slip-resistant soles, hard materials that protect the foot from falling objects and metal protection for the toes. And on top of it all, they should also be comfortable enough for whole day work.

When it comes to the health of workers, the shoes have to be comfortable and also made in the way that they offer enough support for your feet. Standing on your feet all day and working can be hard for your feet as well as for your back and posture. Quality of the soles is also very important. They should be strong and flexible, but also shock-absorbent. The entire shoe should be made out of natural, breathable material to keep the foot fresh and repel the water.

Best workplace safety is achieved by using a proper, recommended gear. Safety regulations are there to prevent accidents and injuries, or at least to make sure their number is significantly decreased. They protect both the workers and their employers and also ensure maximum safety and project efficiency. Some of the basic and best pieces of protective equipment any workplace should include are hard hats, earplugs, goggles, safety shoes, face masks and others, depending on the nature of the job site.

From Gloves to Goggles – Power Tool Safety Guide

From Gloves to Goggles – Power Tool Safety Guide

Power tools are no joke and save time on any job! Be it drilling, cutting, grinding or heating power tool are incredibly useful for any tradesperson. But they also require a great level of skill and care in order to be used correctly. We have come together with Orbital Fasteners to help you stay safe when working with 5 of the most common power tools.

Cordless Screwdriver

Cordless screwdrivers are can be found in most toolboxes, you will find a type of cordless screwdriver, which are portable, flexible, and compact! When using a cordless screwdriver, you should wear some form of long-sleeved protective clothing or old clothing, to avoid causing pain or irritation to your skin. When you are piercing through wood or metal you may have dust in the air so wearing goggles is essential to prevent irritation.

Angle Grinder

Angle Grinders are versatile tools used on hard materials such as steel, concrete, and asphalt. To remain safe, you must use the correct disc for the job otherwise, you’ll be putting yourself in danger and may damage the tool itself. As a dangerous piece of kit, you should always wear protective eyewear or goggles as angle grinders can throw up debris which can cause damage to unprotected eyes. Heavy duty gloves should also be worn if you are cutting through metal to avoid any swarf coming into contact with your hands. Protective workwear such as CAT Workwear is also recommended for extra safety along with ear protection.

Hammer Drill

Hammer Drills are a very handy tool to have for any tradesperson or DIY enthusiast. Making sure you have protective eyewear, footwear, gloves and clothing which will not be caught in the Hammer Drill is an important detail which is often overlooked. Lose items of clothing getting caught will obviously be ruined and could cause risk to yourself. The way a hammer drill rotates gives it a different kind of risk compared to say a Power Drill which has a lower risk compared. Removing dirt and shavings from previous use can also prolong the life of your Hammer Drill and prevent any overheating and reduced performance.

Jigsaws

When using a Jigsaw, you have to avoid a whole host of risks whether it be shocks, fire or lacerations. When a jigsaw is exposed to water it can cause a shock so should be kept in a dry location free of any moisture. Some of the most common injuries are fire based when it comes to electrical power tools and Jigsaws are no different. When operating a jigsaw, you can get burnt when excessive flows of electricity which can spark a fire. So, fire protective gloves are advised. The most common injury with Jigsaws are lacerations which happens when the operator gets their hand too close to the Jigsaw and slices their skin.

Heat Gun

Heat Guns might not at first glance look like the most dangerous of power tools but with the high levels of heat that a Heat Gun can produce, the risks are very high. Firstly, PPE or Personal Protective Equipment will be needed when using this tool. Respirator Masks prevent inhaling any fume the Heat Gun produces and using gloves which are resistant to chemicals can protect your hands from any danger or risks which a heat gun can cause. Additionally, make sure there are no wood shavings or sawdust around the area you are using as they may start to combust causing a risk of fire.

Safety in the Lab – Essential Equipment You Need

Safety in the Lab – Essential Equipment You Need

Any laboratory that practises good safety will take care to ensure it has the right equipment on hand at all times.

No matter the industry – pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, industrial engineering or food production – the same safety precautions must be taken to create a safe, productive and enjoyable working environment for all.

Below are some of the main safety clothing and equipment that should be found in most laboratories. Though the needs and requirements of labs will vary, many of these will lend themselves to a variety of processes and uses.

The equipment can be roughly categorised into three groups:

–          General PPE (used daily)

–          General purpose equipment

–          Specialised equipment, if required.

General PPE

  1. Safety shoes/boots        Safety shoes or boots are used for a number of reasons in the lab.

First, they improve grip performance on the lab floor, helping to avoid slips and trips.

Second, they protect the feet against falling heavy or sharp objects, which would otherwise puncture normal shoes.

Safety boots incorporate protective toe caps as well as other protective features such as slip-resistant soles and insulation against extremes. Safety shoes, meanwhile, incorporate protective toe caps like boots but are available metal-free as “composite footwear”. This makes them much more lightweight.

There are many different types of safety shoes on the market, which can make choosing the right ones overwhelming. However, all in all, safety shoes must:

–          Meet the legal requirements

–          Be the correct type for the task or worker

–          Be sued or worn correctly by all staff required.

Safety shoes ideally need to be slip-resistant, avoid static build-up and suit the main contaminants and surfaces in your workplace.

  1.    Safety Glasses/Goggles

Safety glasses and goggles protect against foreign objects that may splash into the eye, as well as cuts and scrapes to the cornea.

Some of the most common workplace injuries happen to the eyes, 90% of which could be easily avoided by the correct safety eyewear being worn.

The most common types of eye injury include splashes from grease and oil; burns from steam; ultraviolet or infrared radiation exposure, and flying wood or metal chips.

Also, some lab staff may be at risk of acquiring infectious diseases from eye exposure.

Types of safety eyewear include:

–          Safety glasses with side shields (worn in areas with flying particles and dust)

–          Goggles (work when working with chemicals)

–          Special-purpose safety glasses, goggles, face shields or helmets (for working near hazardous radiation).

Eyewear should be selected based on the hazards of each activity. Prescription safety glasses are also available for those that usually wear spectacles, with safety glasses having much stronger lenses and frames than regular glasses.

The most common materials for safety glasses are plastic, polycarbonate and Trivex, with polycarbonate offering the most protection.

  1.    Safety Gloves

As with other PPE, safety gloves need to be suited to the hazards workers will be working with. They will usually be made of nitrile or latex, depending on allergies, but different gloves are more suited to different types of chemicals.

Glove selection can be determined by:

–          Chemical type

–          Temperature extremes and cryogenic properties

–          Physical hazards (piercing objects)

–          pH

–          Toxicity

–          Infectious potential of biological hazards.

It’s also necessary to consider whether contact with the chemical will be incidental or extended.

If the contact will be incidental (short-lived), disposable gloves are usually fine. Nitrile gloves are generally preferred over latex due to their chemical resistance and easy visibility when ripped.

If contact will be extended, norfoil gloves are recommended for highly toxic or easily absorbed through skin. These are usually reusable, but must be washed, left to air-dry and checked for punctures and tips after each use.

  1.    Lab Coat

A lab coat should fit properly and chosen according to the type of hazard and chemicals. There are various styles available, including women’s fit and varying sleeve lengths, so it’s always possible to find the fit you need.

Lab coats should be worn in the work area at all times buttoned or snapped, with the sleeves rolled down. They should be removed whenever one exits the work area, for example, when leaving work or going to the restroom.

If contaminated by spills or splashes, the lab coat should be removed immediately and disposed of as hazardous waste. They come in a range of materials – from flame-resistant Nomex and cotton, to traditional materials like polycotton blends and polyester (a good barrier).

General Purpose Equipment

 5. Fume Extraction

Fume extraction can be acquired in the form of either a cabinet or localised fume hood.

When choosing between the two, a hazard analysis will need to be done first of all to see what contaminants need to be removed, as well as air monitoring, which will determine what chemicals workers are exposed to.

The pertinent data obtained will determine what type of fume extraction system you need.

Ducted hood extraction systems are ventilated enclosures, where the ducting connects to the outside so contaminants are pulled out of the building. They are safe and easy to maintain and usually made up of a base, work surface, hood, blower and ducting.

Biosafety cabinets are another form of fume extraction that use HEPA filtration. They are categorised by three classes:

  • Class I – air is drawn away from the lab worker and across the work surface
  • Class II – air is drawn safely around operator, whilst sterile air flows downwards onto the work surface and exhaust air is HEPA filtered before either being recirculated into the lab or released into the atmosphere through ductwork or a canopy.
  • Class III – a gas-tight enclosure, with both intake of air and exhaust air passing through HEPA filtration.

Biosafety cabinets provide a safe environment for the research and examination of infectious microorganisms or other hazardous particulates.

Specialised Equipment

Full Face Respirators

These are highly recommended for all clandestine lab decontamination jobs, as eyes and nostrils can be an entry point for hazardous chemicals.

It is important to choose the right type of respirator. In secondary areas (where contamination has spread but no actual cooking took place), it may be acceptable to wear a half-face respirator with protective glasses.

Consider also the type of filter to be used with the respirator. Some only work in certain situations; for example, clan lab remediation jobs require the use of an ammonia filter.

  1. Tyvek Suits

When it comes to protective suits, Tyvek make an excellent choice. As the trusted leader for a variety of products, Tyvek suits offers high protection along with comfort, being made from versatile materials which are tough yet lightweight.

Tyvek’s creator DuPoint are widely known for their extensive testing against things like inward leakage, penetration and permeation. The suits are an excellent barrier against liquids and aerosols, are anti statically treated, and are “low linting” thanks to the non-woven fabric.

Because Tyvek suits aren’t made from films or laminates that can wear off over time, they are extremely long-lasting and abrasion-resistant.

Tyvek suits can provide protection against chemicals, oils, liquids, dust particles and fibres and airborne elements. They can be used for a variety of scenarios, including chemical safety, pharmaceuticals, biological hazard protection and chemical protection.

Different suits are tailored to different hazards, so as with anything else, always determine the type of hazard and select the correct suit accordingly.

  1. Dust Mask

Processes such as grinding, sieving sediment or plant materials or polishing can generate fine dust particles in the air.

Dust masks protect against these particles, which can be potentially harmful, and cause allergic reactions and asthma, if these processes cannot be carried out in a fume cupboard.

Dust masks can also be worn when handling or transferring powders in bulk.

  1. Chemical Absorbant granules

Chemical spill cleanup is something that must always be planned for in any lab, with the right tools on hand to control and manage spills when they occur.

Different industries require different types of spill cleanup processes, but chemical absorbent granules serve many different purposes and carry many advantages over other spill cleanup substances, with a simplistic and flexible application to small spills.

There are a few different types od chemical absorbent granules on the market. These are:

  • Multi-zorb – an industrial spillage absorbant quality granule clay. Multi-zorb absorbs spillages without granular breakdown, and is clean, dry and safe.
  • New Safety thread – this is non-marking, non-dusting, and suitable for strong chemicals.
  • Light Plus – paper pellet granules.
  • E-Sorb – fire retardant wood fibre granules.
  • ELCEF fibre – biodegradable oil selective fibre.
  1. Saline Eye wash

The first 10-15 seconds after a hazardous chemical coming into contact with the eye can often be the most critical. If immediate flushing is carried out, this greatly minimises the likelihood of any serious damage being done.

Emergency eyewash stations provide on-the-spot decontamination, helping workers flush away hazardous substances that can cause injury to the eye. They are an essential addition to the lab as they provide a necessary backup in the case of exposure to chemicals.

Saline is a very popular “flushing fluid” that is medically approved, and often used as a solution for eye washes.

The worker should use the eye wash station to flush the eyes for a minimum of 15 minutes, or 20 minutes if substance is not known.

The total flushing time may vary for different types of chemicals. For example, non-irritable substances may be flushed for only five minutes, whilst corrosives will need 30 and strong alkalis will need to be flushed for 60 minutes.

Whilst flushing, the user must keep eyes open and rotate numerous times in all directions to thoroughly remove the contamination.

About ReAgent

ReAgent has been producing chemicals for the food and construction industries for the last 40 years. As well as the supply of raw chemicals and materials, they also specialise in the production of chemical solutions, mixing, blending, filling and packing.

ReAgent is particularly proud of its high quality policies and transparent working relationship with its customers.

They are currently ISO accredited in both the 9001 Quality Standard and 14001 Environmental Standard, and are proactively working towards accreditation in ISO 45001 Occupational Health & Safety Standard.

The Importance of Personal Safety Equipment in the Workplace

The Importance of Personal Safety Equipment in the Workplace

Personal safety equipment is important for both the safety of employees as well as the company. Hard hats, safety gloves, and other devices can make a huge impact on your personal well-being.

But what are some of the most commonly used safety equipment? How exactly does it go about keeping you safe? Read on to learn more about the history of PPE and discover the important role personal protective equipment has played in the workplace.

 

The history of workplace PPE

While the history of personal protective equipment dates back beyond modern times, it wasn’t until 1970 that the US Government passed the Occupational Safety and Health Act. From that day, it put forth a new era where the entire US workforce would become protected from job-related injuries, illness, and even death.

After OSHA became established in 1971, the new agency set forth on a unique mission. To create a thorough program which would meet the legislative intent of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. After creating the program, they then went on to define the appropriate list of PPE for every job description a company could have. Since then, OSHA has continued to make extravagant advances in workplace safety and safety equipment.

Personal protective equipment

Even though laws have passed requiring the use of personal safety equipment, accidents still occur every year. But what are the most commonly used PPE that can keep skilled laborers safe while on the job?

Head protection

Most common on constructions sites, it’s easy to identify day laborers and skilled laborers by the hard hats they wear at work. Design to protect your head from falling objects such as equipment or materials. Protective head wear has protected workers for years from objects that would otherwise impact or penetrate them.

While some hard hats cover only your head, they can become quite intricate. Options are available offering extra protections with face shields, earmuffs, and more. For optimal protection, it’s important to wear head protection that is well-fitted and fits snugly on your head.

Eye and face protection

As important as head protection, laborers should take precautionary measures to keep their eye and face safe too. Products such as full-face shields protect your face from flying debris. Eye protection like safety goggles are necessary for skilled laborers who work with metal, wood, and hot temperatures.

Hand and skin protection

Important in just about every line of skilled labor or day labor, hand and skin protection can literally save the skin on your hands. Typically required by all jobs in the construction industry, it’s important to have adequate PPE such as gloves to avoid skin injury. Use hand and skin protection that help you avoid occupational hazards. Good skin protection would include rubber gloves, cut-resistant gloves, and heat-resistant gloves.

Respiratory protection

If you work on a site where toxic substances are present, it’s important to wear proper respiratory protection. You’ll want to keep vital organs like your lungs in good working order. Remember, just because you can’t see something doesn’t mean it can’t hurt you. PPE like respirators are not only designed to protect you from paint spray and dust, but they can also protect you from other danger. These can include substances such as pesticides, fumes, and other hazardous contaminants.

While those in the workforce may not be able to escape dangerous conditions all the time, you can do your best to protect yourself. Doing so, you’ll be able to take part in the workforce longer, get out alive, and remain healthy.

Author bio:

Ron Robbins is an online marketing specialist at Leadhub based in San Antonio Texas. He actively represents companies such as Dooley Tackaberry who provide quality personal protective equipment for those in the gas and oil industry.

How to be Safe in The Trade Industry – A Professional Guide

Working in trade is tough and each job comes with its own challenges and tasks that make it unique. From plumbers to builders you have to be skilled, qualified but most importantly, safe. Safety in the workplace has become a huge part of a day to day trade now and each profession is different. Lucky for you, we have teamed up with TradesmenTricks.com to provide a guide on safety for some of the top trades in the industry.

 Plumber

There are many aspects of being a plumber which can cause danger which will need equipment to prevent hazardous materials damaging items of clothing or even skin.

Full overalls or protective clothing is required, with minimal points that can be caught by obstructions as this can cause an issue if caught on nails for example. When working with possible electrical currents, non-conductive clothing should be worn for the safety of the plumber. The eyes should also be protected from sparks, drips, and dust, and leather or latex gloves are a necessity to guard against any injury to the hands or contact with hazardous or unpleasant materials.

Electrician

Electricians are tasked with a whole host of jobs and tasks including fitting, repairing and inspections just to name a few. Often working in confined spaces and will handle dangerous products which can cause electric shocks! So, remaining safe with PPE is vital.

Electricians should be equipped with rubber insulating gloves, with liner gloves used inside to diminish discomfort and leather protective gloves optionally worn over the top to protect against cuts, scratches, and punctures. Gloves should fit well and maintain flexibility to allow for dexterous handling of smaller items.

Plasterer

From walls and ceilings appliance to overseeing larger projects on construction site, plasterers are working with equipment which can cause damage to clothing and risk to the tradesmen’s health and well-being. With risks of developing problems such as rhinitis which can be solved by using a face mask to avoid breathing in harmful air containing dust.

Dust can also cause damage to the eyes so an eye mask or goggles and the perfect protective item to prevent danger, along with a hard hat being used at all times.

Plasterers can also be exposed to chemicals through skin contact, so full-body coverings are recommended, as are thick gloves to prevent injuring or irritating the hands.

Carpenter

Carpenters are in need of major protection as coming in contact with wood is dangerous. Producing sawdust, wood chipping and splinters are just a few minor risks. With working with power tools which can cause harm to the worker which will need protecting against also.

Anyone working extensively with wood needs to protect both their eyes and their ears. On-site carpentry involves lots of cutting and shaping, so safety glasses should be used to prevent sawdust invading the eyes, and proper hearing protectors must guard against the constant noise created by power tools.

Power tools are also a danger but can’t be avoided for the job, we recommend making sure that the surface you work on is clear and no obstructions are around which could lead to dangerous complications.

Post provided by  Oliver at  TradesmenTricks

Office Hygiene – What’s Hiding On Your Desk?

Office Hygiene – What’s Hiding On Your Desk?

Where does your mind goes when you hear the words bacteria ridden? Does it go to toilet seats? The mushy tomato in the fridge? The sweaty gym shorts under the bed? The dog’s toy that he someone keeps managing to get out of the bin?

Well, have you ever thought about your office desk?

I bet you’re looking at it right now. Notebooks scattered around. Half a bag of crisps. A pen in between your teeth.

A recent study carried out by The Cleaning Services Group, has claimed that the average office desk is 400 times dirtier than the average toilet seat.

The Average Worker

According to the study, 8 in 10 people in the UK work in offices. Those 8 in 10 people spend an average of 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. In their offices.

If we spend so much of our time in the office then how come we treat it so badly? Even our toilet seat at home is cleaner than our office?

Is it because our office it isn’t our home? Do we care a bit less?

It isn’t our job to clean the office? It isn’t our responsibility.

I’m sorry to break it to you, but when it comes to office hygiene we’re all responsible.

Can I really get sick from a dirty desk?

We all know that if someone comes in with the cold, there is a very good chance everyone else will get sick too.

Sure, the risk of getting the cold or flu increases, but what about everyone’s least favourite friend, the norovirus? Also known as the stomach bug?

Or even worse you could get Hep A&B or Influenza!

You might think it’s not a big deal to come into work with a little cold, you can struggle through your shift, and at worse take a day or two off work. But if you’re taking a day off work then who is picking up your work?

Productivity decreases as people are stretched with workloads or when feeling under the weather, and stress increases. Â

And what about absenteeism?

In one year in the UK 131 million days were lost due to sickness, costing the economy £29 BILLION.

Bad office hygiene can make you sick, make others sick, and decrease productivity, as well as causing unnecessary stress.

And to think, most of it is avoidable with some common sense, and by promoting a healthy and hygienic office environment.

The facts behind the germs

A huge  80% of infections are spread through contaminated surfaces, rather than through coughing and sneezing as most people believe.

It is the surfaces that people touch most, where the germs are lurking in their thousands if not millions!  The office phone, the buttons on the microwave, the printer, and don’t forget the door handles.

Unfortunately for us, bacteria and viruses can survive on hard surfaces for up to 72 hours.

Plenty of time to spread through the entire office.

An appalling statistic has been established that 32% of office workers don’t wash their hands after visiting the toilet! And these are the hands that come in contact with more than 10 million bacteria per day!

So you can imagine how easy it is for germs to spread.

The most commonly touched surfaces in the workspace is your Desk.

The average office desk has more than 10 million bacteria hiding on it.

Your keyboard containing 3, 295 bacteria per square inch and the mouse adding an extra 1676 per square inch.

To contrast this, the average toilet seat only has 49 bacteria microbes per square inch!

And would you eat your lunch of a toilet seat? No, that’s disgusting! Yet 2 in 3 office workers eat at their bacteria ridden desks, and 1 in 5 don’t even wipe it down before doing so.

One person carrying a virus will infect 50% of all equipment and employees in their vicinity in just FOUR HOURS!

Who is responsible?

You are! Everyone in the office is responsible to ensure their is a healthy and hygienic working environment.

Management is responsible to communicate the facts with the staff to involve the staff to take accountability.

The management should also provide solutions such as bins, soap, cleaning stations, and ensure cleaning regimes take place.

Staff should take responsibility for their personal hygiene and their work station. Be proactive by preventing the spread of bacteria by using bins and washing hands. Staff should also take accountability and call in sick to work if sick with a spreadable illness.

About Safety Training Scotland

Since Safety Training Scotland was founded in 2013, it has delivered courses to over 2000 successful delegates. At Safety Training we’re passionate about changing the negative perception of health and safety training. Our highest priority is not just to inform, but also to engage and inspire. We are transforming the safety training industry and putting an end to “death by powerpoint”.

Industrial Fabrication Quality and Safety Practices

Industrial Fabrication Quality and Safety Practices
When you’re in the metal fabrication industry, there are certain quality and safety practices you should follow to ensure that your workers are safe and that your clients are satisfied. Whether it is steel or aluminum fabrication, welders are always exposed to hazards that can endanger their lives.
In this article, we will discuss some of the guidelines you can follow to improve the quality and safety of welding practices in your workshop. Whether you’re working for a large construction company, a small metal fabrication workshop or a welding-centric company, you will find the something useful in this post.
Studying the Manual Carefully
These days, https://www.nist.gov/sites/default/files/documents/el/whitepapers.pdf new technologies are always introduced to the metal fabrication workshop</a>. When operating the equipment, it is important that welders carefully read, study and follow the manual. Take your time to familiarize yourself with the manual’s content so that you can use the equipment efficiently. If you lose the manual, you can always contact the manufacturer and request for a replacement. You can also go online and download the manual from the manufacturer’s website.
Wear the Proper Work Clothing and Gear
People inside the work area should not wear shorts or short-sleeved shirts. No matter how long or short you’d use the machines, you should always wear proper safety gear which includes protective clothing and gloves, among others.
It is advisable for workers to wear flame-resistant clothing with tightly woven material. Some welding jackets may be thick and heavy, but you can always search for manufacturers that offer flame-resistant clothing that is lightweight.
Make sure that no skin is exposed to the damaging and harmful ultraviolet and infrared rays coming from the welding machine. This means that you should also make sure that your pockets, shirts and pant cuffs are buttoned. The aforementioned may catch sparks and get your skin smoldered.
When it comes to gloves, you do not have to settle for the generic ones. You can find ergonomic gloves that are designed with curved fingers, making certain welding processes more comfortable. Of course, you should not forget to protect your feet too. So, wear high-top leather shoes or boots and avoid wearing tennis or fabric shoes that may catch sparks. Moreover, do not let the legs of your pants go over your shoes.
Ensure Proper Ventilation
Constantly breathing in the fumes and smoke coming from the welding process can be dangerous to your health. Inside an enclosed work space, toxic fumes or shielding gases may accumulate and replace the breathable air. So, do not forget to mount an exhaust hood so that workers can have proper ventilation inside the work area.
Keep your Eyes Protected
Welders who do neglect to wear proper eye gear may experience an ‘arc flash’. Although temporary, this condition can be painful and it is caused by exposing the eyes to the rays from the welding arc. Sometimes, people experience an arc flash hours after exposure and it would be too late for them to realize that they should have worn protective eyewear.
Do not neglect to wear a helmet that is fitted with a filter shade that protects your eyes. Moreover, under the helmet, remember to wear safety glasses with side shields and ear protection. Whether you’re doing steel fabrication or simply observing, always remember to wear a protective helmet.
Get Auto-Darkening Helmets to Avoid Stress Related Injuries
If you want a better option apart from traditionally fixed helmets, then go for auto-darkening helmets. Helmets like such are lighter which reduces neck fatigue. When they have to drop the hood, welders do not need to snap their head because of the helmet’s lightweight nature.
You can also save some seconds in between welds because of the auto-darkening function. When you’re working on bigger metal fabrication jobs, these few seconds can accumulate to several minutes. Consequently, you will have a faster turnaround time that will profit the business.
Keeping the Welding Workspace Organized
One of the most important safety practices in metal fabrication is organizing the workspace. Every piece of welding equipment must be clearly labelled and have a designated storage space. Moreover, the welding workspace must only have the tools and equipment that the welder uses and nothing more. For a more efficient and organized workspace, it is advisable to get a welding table with a scissors mechanism. This allows the welder to adjust the height according to the application so that they won’t have to switch from one table to another.
Encourage Efficient Operations by Using Boom-Mounted Wire Feeders
Wire feeders that are mounted with booms are efficient for welders who work on a high-production welding station. Having one increases the work station’s efficiency, flexibility, and comfort. Place the drive assembly at the end of the boom and the controls of the wire feeder at the 12- or 16-ft. boom’s base.
This option allows you to rotate the boom at 360 degrees. The set-up also allows you to move the boom up and down at 60 degrees, giving you around 24 to 32 ft. work area diameter. After setting the boom in its position the counterbalance will hold it in place.
Encourage Welders to Comply with Safety Rules
When new programs are rolled out, workers see the project as something that will only last for a few months. Metal fabrication companies can implement a different approach to promote welding safety.
Little by little, incorporate the guidelines listed in this article into the daily work activities of the welders. If they comply, motivate them by providing them with incentives. You can even encourage them more by using a weekly point system that will be rewarded by the end of the month.
Another effective approach you can use is the ‘stick’ in the ‘carrot and stick’ technique. When employees violate the quality and safety rules, give them a demerit. Implementing consequences lets workers know that you are serious about your guidelines. Some may think that this is a harsh way of treating your subordinates. However, you can combine it with the incentive program so that they will still have the motivation to do their best.
People working in the metal fabrication industry are exposed to hazardous processes. Apart from the equipment and the products, the labourers are the most important assets of a company. When they are kept healthy, safe and happy, you can ensure quality workmanship and business success.
Author Bio:
Ashley Batman is a writer at <a href=”http://ramfab.com.au/“>RamFab.com.au</a>. She worked as an online video editor before she started her writing career.
Photo Credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/highwaysagency/“>Highways England</a>

A Safety-First Approach to Refueling a Forklift

A Safety-First Approach to Refueling a Forklift

Acute inhalation of carbon monoxide (CO) gas is considered to be one of the most frequent causes of occupational fatality in the United States, according to an article published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), US National Library of Medicine (NLM). The fact that CO is a colorless and odorless gas makes it extremely hard to detect and therefore it is also dubbed as “the silent killer.”

According to the NCBI/NLM resource, fuel-powered forklifts are one of the common sources of CO poisoning. It is, therefore, extremely important for an employer to put in adequate safeguards around the use of forklifts, especially during the refueling process.

Even a small thing like using a high-quality safety valve can help prevent accidents during forklift refueling, which involves the use of dangerous gases. For instance, experts at Clark Cooper recommend a specific solenoid valve for hydrogen gas that can withstand its greater pressures, in comparison to other liquids or gases.

Follow OSHA Guidelines to the Letter

Did you know that workplace forklift training is governed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), under the US Department of Labor? There is already a set of guidelines by OSHA that act as best practices that every industrial unit should follow. These include forklifts with:

ü      Internal Combustion Engines

While forklifts with internal combustion engines are easier to refuel, a great amount of caution needs to be exercised while doing so to avoid spills and leaks. Here are some best practices to consider:

  • As a standard operating procedure, all hydraulics must be checked beforehand, along with the levels of oil and water, even before commencing the refueling operation.
  • It is a good time to check for any leaks that might have occurred in the battery, cylinder or fuel system.
  • Adequate ventilation is important and therefore the refueling must not occur in an area that is poorly ventilated.
  • You must be alert to unusual noises or excessive vibrations.
  • The color of the exhaust can reveal a lot. For instance, black smoke might be a sign of incomplete combustion.

ü      Liquid Petroleum Gas

  • Avoid confined areas, since LPG is heavier than air and can collect in low lying areas, thereby increasing the chances of an explosion, when it is accidentally exposed to heat.
  • LPG trucks must not be parked near heat sources.
  • The service valve must always be turned off when the forklift is parked for a long period of time.
  • LPG containers must always be handled by trained and authorized personnel only.

ü      Diesel and Gasoline

  • Safe locations should be earmarked for the refueling operation, preferably outdoors.
  • Refueling should not be carried out near heat sources, since that could lead to an explosion.
  • The engine must be switched off during the refueling process.
  • Transmission must be put to Neutral and the parking brakes applied.
  • No one should smoke while the refueling is in progress.
  • Keep an eye on the fuel levels. Avoid letting the forklift run out of fuel completely or being too low on fuel, since sediments can be drawn into the fuel system.
  • Do not fill the tank right to the top. Leave some space because fuel tends to expand when heated.

In addition, you must also be aware of the safety instructions as prescribed in the operator’s manual and comply with those guidelines as well. Remember, it is a federal offense for anyone below the age of 18 to operate an industrial forklift or for anyone above 18 years to operate it without proper training and certification.

Plumbing Safety Tips

Plumbing Safety Tips

While many people would think that they can just DIY and repair their plumbing systems, it is undeniable that sometimes, it can be dangerous too. This is why many experts advice home and business owners to just leave any renovation, remodeling, or repair to the pros. But, some will still risk it, especially if it’s a minor issue and the hassle of acquiring the services of contractors is not worth it.

In any given time and circumstances, standard safety precaution and measures should be diligently applied. To make sure you are fully safe, here are some basic safety rules and reminders which you should apply when dealing with home plumbing projects:

 Turn off every electrical source.

One of the most immediate dangers of dealing with plumbing is the threat of being electrocuted. Remember, since most likely you will be working on wet areas, water is a conductor of electricity and electricity can travel through water. Being electrocuted imposes a great risk for your health and safety. If you are repairing a plumbing issue near an electrical source, it is important to remember to turn off the power near that source.

Wear protective gear.

Never think it is over the top to wear protective gear when working with your plumbing system. Wear goggles to protect your eye from any small debris. Safety goggles particularly will provide the adequate protection for your eyes for most jobs. Wear an ear-protecting gear when you’re working with loud tools. Remember that Protecting your ears is even more important when you are performing nosier jobs like hammering or heavy-duty pounding. Continuous loud noise can damage your ears more than you think. Wear gloves to protect your hands. The type of gloves that you may need depends on the type of job that you are doing:

  • If your work involves chemicals, wear rubber gloves.
  • If you are doing some soldering, wear a pair of heavy-duty leather gloves

You should also consider your working clothes. As much as possible, never work while on your home clothes or pajamas. Wear long pants and long sleeves for waste water protection containing chemicals and bacteria. You can also wear a respirator, or face masks to avoid inhaling chemical fumes. Keep in mind that accidents can happen all the time, and being prepared is better than being sorry in the end.

Use the right tools.

One of the most important factors of successfully doing any job is having and using the right tools specific for the need. If you are DIY-ing for the first time, you might want to invest in the right tools for each job. You cannot just improvise, or use a different tool specified for a sole purpose, it can only worsen the situation, or even lead to bigger, harder to solve problems. The repair can also take a much longer time to do if you use the wrong tools. You can even lose more money in the long run!

Although buying each tool may be hard on the budget, it is important to purchase high quality ones which can last the test of time and will not deteriorate over a couple of uses. Also, know which tools you will need prior to doing the renovation or repair. Keep in mind that these tools were designed to perform a specific task, made to fit in specific spaces and you should respect it and use them accordingly.

 Study and Practice.

Studying what you need to do by the book can only do so much. Practice. Watch tutorials and know the proper usage of the tools. This can help you address the needed repairs properly.

Know the emergency numbers.

In line with preparation, have the emergency contact numbers at hand. List down the contact for the fire department, hospital and ambulance numbers, police hotlines, and specific utility numbers as well. Have them ready or displayed in a common area on your house.

  Calm down 

If anything bad happens, remember to calm down. Sometimes, panicking can do no good and only worsen the situation. Know the first aid and the right thing to do when accidents happen. Remember, keeping calm will help you make the best decision and act quickly and wisely.

 

Safety should always be your top priority regardless of the situation. Hazards can be prevented by knowing what to do, using the right tools, practicing, being prepared, and most importantly, staying calm. In spite of being willing to repair things, you should note that your health and your life should be your priority.

SOURCES: