Today we bring you some digestible information around safety in manufacturing. Our aim at Cerasis continues and will always be to provide the most important information to those in the manufacturing, distribution, supply chain, and logistics industry. As a transportation management solutions provider offering both technology solutions and managed services, our goal as a business is to provide a streamlined processes and allow core business focus for our shipper customers who are manufacturers and distributors. Through our blog, we extend this mission by providing information, such as today’s subject, safety in manufacturing, so that our shippers and even those who are not our shippers can have great information to improve their business and continue cutting out costly waste. It is proven time and time again that a safer workplace is more profitable.
We will first start out explaining why safety in manufacturing is important, a quick set of bullet points you could print or give to employees to keep safety top of mind, and finally a nice infographic giving good statistics on the importance of safety. We hope this post gives you something to think about! Even if you are not a manufacturer or distribution company, these tips are applicable to any industry!
So what can safety in manufacturing do for you? The benefits of maintaining a safe work environment are many, but first and foremost, safety is about what you can do to protect your workers. It’s the right thing to do. Employers should send their workers home in the same condition they came in. Why wouldn’t that be important to a company?
But the practice of safety also brings financial benefits to the table. A safe work environment impacts a project’s bottom line both directly and indirectly. Costs associated with incidents, including lost costs, worker’s comp claims, insurance costs and legal fees are minimized in a safe work environment. So are the indirect costs that follow incidents, including the lost productivity that occurs when people turn their attention to dealing with an incident. If you’re doing safety effectively in a business world, it’s going to relate to fewer schedule interruptions, which will minimize your costs. You’re not going to have to stop work because you run into a problem
On the flip side, a safe work environment boosts employee morale, which, in turn, increases productivity, efficiency and profit margins. When people feel like they have a good, safe work environment, they feel like they can make a difference. There are fewer staff absences, less staff turnover and an improved quality of work.
You can print the following checklist and have the employee sign and put in their file. We also suggest that you put this list in a highly visible area, addressing once per week in a safety meeting so that safety in the manufacturing workplace is top of mind for both management and staff:
The following post on safety in manufacturing is applicable to most businesses, not only manufacturing facilities. However, there is an important role safety plays in manufacturing facilities to ensure your company is maintaining the highest levels of output. Without safety as a top priority in manufacturing operations, you are sure to experience delays in getting your product finished and shipped to your customer, thus impacting, ultimately, your company’s bottom line.
When it comes to safety in manufacturing, the safety manager is an employer’s point man for worker safety. This means that the safety manager’s responsibilities start with ensuring that all of the employer’s OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Association) mandated responsibilities are met. The following are five of the main responsibilities OSHA places on employers:
In addition, the safety manager is usually the person responsible for ensuring the company is in compliance with OSHA employer requirements. These types of requirements include:
If the company is not exempt, or partially exempt from the OSHA record keeping requirements, the safety manager ensures that records of work-related injuries and illnesses are maintained. To be partially exempt an employer must meet one of the following requirements:
With the responsibilities of a safety manager encompassing such a broad range for safety in manufacturing facilities, how do they accomplish all of this? The following are some of the functions that are the responsibility of a safety manager, and that result in compliance with OSHA requirements. In larger organizations safety assistants will be responsible for some of these functions. In a smaller organization the owner, or HR manager, may be responsible for safety.
Overall, the responsibilities of a safety manager include anything required to ensure complete compliance with OSHA standards, and for maintaining a safe and healthy workplace. What this means will be different in each workplace. At a minimum it requires familiarity with OSHA standards and implementing management practices to ensure compliance with those requirements
One of the critical responsibilities of a safety manager is to ensure that durable, clear and effective signs and labels are used. The best way to accomplish this is by using a label printer and tough-tested labeling supplies.
In order to keep employees and supervisors focused on the importance of safety in the organization, the safety manager should TAG ANY safety violations with different colored TAGS. When operations personnel see these TAGS, they must fill them out as to what action was taken to correct the safety violation and what will be done to avoid it the next time.
As Safety Manager, in one company where I was the man responsible for safety in manufacturing operations, I saw an ocean going container being unloaded without safety shoes being used by warehouse employees, there was no unloading dock, the forklift was not able to get into the 40 foot ocean going container and they used long rubber strips to move the pallets inside the container. Naturally the employees in this container jumped out to avoid the heavy tipping pallets, and the forklift was not maintained properly, and died several times while unloading this container. There were colored tags all over this UNSAFE operation. The Warehouse Manager had to write a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to eliminate these unsafe issues for the next 40 foot ocean going container that was due in the following week. This was a lesson on how NOT to practice Safety. Never take safety for granted!
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