What does March Madness and safety have in common? Stop and think about your favorite winning sports team. How do they do it? Do they have a superstar that will always carry the team? Sometimes but not likely! Consistently winning teams are made up of individual players who all maintain a high level of intensity and share a collective mind-set that they will not be defeated, and that tis how they succeed as a team. Every team member puts in the hard work and practice that gives them the confidence and ability to make the winning plays when the game is on the line.
So what does this all have to do with safety? Simple – we can’t win as long as our team members are getting hurt. Keeping ourselves an those around us safe requires hard work, practice, and a constant awareness of any potential risks and knowing how to eliminate or avoid them.
Put in the hard work and practice:
- Get trained – learn the rules.
- Teach safety – take it home and pass it on.
- Practice hazard recognition – know how to respond when conditions change.
- Develop safety awareness – anticipate problems and elminiate the risk.
- Lead by example – everybody is watching.
Learn the winning plays:
- Wear the proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the job.
- Select the right tools for the job.
- Always complete a Safe Plan of Action (SPA).
- Practice good housekeeping.
- Get help to move heavy or awkward objects.
- Eliminate pinch points & sharp edges.
- Report injuries and near misses.
- Never defeat guards or safety equipment.
- Don’t rush and don’t be fatigued.
- Always Lockout / Tagout (LOTO) to eliminate all energy sources.