These days, there are so many OSHA workplace safety standards and policies that it’s easy to overlook the latest compliance requirements. Following these standards is best to ensure the health and safety of your employees, as well as what’s best for your bottom line. Here are some best practices that will allow you to do that.
Understand the Policies That Impact Your Industry
The first order of business when it comes to OSHA workplace safety standards is to understand what regulations apply to you. There are some states that have laws that go above and beyond OSHA regulations, and so businesses in those states must adhere to those standards. There are also certain industries that operate based on a specific set of OSHA standards. However, most OSHA workplace safety regulations apply to all industries, which makes them a little vague and open to interpretation. Keep this in mind when going over the regulations that are most relevant to your particular business.
Communicate Hazards Effectively
One of the fundamental rules of OSHA workplace safety is that employees have a right to understand the hazards they will encounter while on the job. They must be educated about these hazards and how to approach them in a safe manner. This information should be available in writing but also explained verbally in a language they understand. This may sound obvious, but it’s one of the most critical OSHA standards.
Create and Practice an Evacuation Plan
Fires and other workplace hazards require every workplace to have an evacuation plan in place. There need to be clear evacuation routes for all employees in case of an emergency. Of course, this also requires a certain number of emergency exits based on the number of workers that must be made with fire-resistant materials. It’s also critical to keep these exits clear at all times and make sure that emergency evacuations are practiced so that employees are prepared.
Don’t Overlook Recordkeeping Requirements
One aspect of OSHA workplace safety standards that are often forgotten is the requirements around recordkeeping. In the event of an OSHA investigation, a business will need to show its records, and the more information it can hand over to inspectors, the easier the inspection will be to perform. In addition to that, OSHA has strict standards for what needs to be recorded and reported. For example, all hospitalizations should be reported within 24 hours and all fatalities within eight hours. There are also specific forms that should be filled out for injuries and illnesses suffered at the workplace.
Post Signs and Distribute OSHA Material
Posting warning signs can be an effective way of improving workplace safety and keeping up with OSHA workplace safety standards. OSHA distributes posters and fliers that convey important information that’s useful to workers. Company leaders should also share any materials shared by OSHA that could pertain to updates or changes in guidelines and policies. Employees are entitled to this information, most of which will be critical to remaining compliant with regulations.
Get Assistance from a Safety Management System
The best way to stay up to date on OSHA workplace safety requirements is to get outside help from a safety management system. At EHS Insight, our safety software helps with everything from training to communication, but it also places great emphasis on compliance. Our software is designed to help you stay ahead of compliance issues and keep up with any changes in policies that could impact how you operate.
If you want to make sure you stay on top of compliance issues, let’s have a conversation about how our system can help you.