Housekeeping at a construction site, office, or home can often provide an indicator for the level of safety culture and expectations for that project or facility. When housekeeping is highly maintained, injuries are typically quite low. When housekeeping is low, you can expect injuries will increase. Why?
Poor housekeeping provides more safety hazards in the work and home environments, causing more chances for injuries to occur. The most obvious hazards of poor housekeeping are slips, trips, and falls from cluttered and dirty walkway areas.
Keeping your work and living spaces clean and organized is an important way to prevent accidents. Below are some suggestions of how to reduce risk of injury.
- Keep floors and stairs clear of objects that could cause slips, trips, and falls.
- Store cleaning products away from food, and out of the reach of children.
- Keep surfaces clean to prevent the spread of germs.
- Be careful with heavy objects stored high that require overhead reaching.
- Properly store items that could cause injury from falling.
- Ensure proper lighting to prevent shadows and trip hazards.
- Keep floors and walkways clear of objects that could cause slips, trips, and falls.
- Keep drawers and filing cabinets shut to prevent them from tipping over, or from people running into them.
- Do not over-stack materials which have the potential to tip over.
- Clean coffee cups and other food containers to prevent the growth of bacteria.
- Clean up all spills right away.
- Keep your work area organized and clutter-free.
- Keep walkways and traffic zones free from debris, power cords, hoses, etc.
- Remove waste to minimize fire hazards.
- Clean up and dispose of scrap, waste, and unused materials.
- Be cautious of slippery surfaces like sealed concrete or sawdust.
- Keep materials at least 5 feet from openings, roof edges, excavations, or trenches.
- Remove, or bend over, nails that protrude from lumber.