Horseplay on the Job

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horseplay toolbox talkHorseplay Safety Talk

Horseplay leads to many injuries and property loss damage incidents in the United States every year. A quick search on YouTube or Google will show you hundreds of these types of incidents. While you should enjoy the work that you do, your work should always be completed safely and responsibly.

Some companies actually condone and provide resources to employees to horseplay and have fun, such as Google, but many companies have a zero-tolerance for it in their workplace.  While horseplay may seem innocent and fun, it can lead to devastating consequences.

Examples of Horseplay Leading to Injuries

  • A guy pulls the chair from beneath a coworker as he goes to sit. The victim falls and bruises his tailbone and cannot properly walk for weeks.
  • A man decides it would be funny to blow an air horn in a coworker’s ear. This action ruptures the victim’s eardrum, requiring medical attention.
  • A worker decides to jump on the side of a piece of equipment and catch a ride. The operator hits a bump at a fast speed in an attempt to scare the other worker. The worker falls off and is run over by the equipment and dies.

Some Safety Tips Involving Horseplay in the Workplace

  • If your company condones or allows some type of horseplay, know the limits. Just because it is allowed does not mean it cannot lead to an incident.
  • Stay busy at work. Excessive downtime often leads to horseplay or other activities to pass the time, which can distract workers from tasks going on around them.
  • Do not initiate horseplay. You do not want to be the one responsible for an injury, fatality, or property damage incident in your workplace.
  • If others around you are taking part or initiating horseplay, report it to a supervisor. Do not just turn a blind eye. An incident can have a huge effect on you, your job, and the company as a whole, depending on the severity of the incident.

Discussion point:

-Have you ever witnessed horseplay lead to an injury or a property damage incident on a job?

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