All employers have a safety program / manual that addresses how their company manages safety. It is a collection of organized information, instructions, policies, and procedures intended to ensure a safe work environment.
These programs / manuals are applicable to all employees at the company, as well as contractors and other businesses that perform work for the company or company work sites. The purpose is to summarize basic safety and health standards and to establish minimum project standards that promote safety, and control hazards and injury / accident risks associated with work.
The minimum standards set forth in a safety program / manual will be typically applied to all activities performed by the company. Those companies performing work for you should be held to your program / manual requirements unless their requirements are more stringent. All employees should be aware of what is in the safety program / manual to understand the expectations and safe working requirements.
Compliance with federal, state, and local codes or regulations is required by law. The safety program /manual is a supplementary document to governmental rules, codes, and regulations having jurisdiction and does not negate, abrogate, or minimize any provisions of these rules, codes, and regulations. It is intended to supplement and enforce the individual program of the employer. There may be additional requirements that are above and beyond OSHA, local, state, and federal guidelines and should be clearly identified.
Management is responsible for preventing environments or situations that could lead to incidents, injuries, illness, or fatalities. This is first accomplished by clearly identified expectations and training, to ensure that employees understand how they are supposed to work. Secondly, the safety program / manual will have a disciplinary action program to identify a course of action if employees fail to follow the requirements. The ultimate success will depend upon the cooperation of every employee and contractor working under the safety program / manual.
Some goals of a safety and health program are listed below:
1. Reduce or eliminate work-related injuries and illnesses.
2. Eliminate releases to the environment and prevents environmental harm.
3. Prevent incidents that expose employees to risk.
4. Achieve compliance with all regulatory agencies.
Do your part and know what your company safety program / manual says and follow it to ensure not just your safety, but the safety of others.