Unsafe Conditions in the Workplace

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Unsafe Conditions Safety Talk

Unsafe conditions will always exist in the world around us. That being said, it is possible to eliminate the majority of the hazards found in our workplaces in order to prevent injuries on the job. It is necessary not only to recognize that these kinds of conditions exist around you but also to take action to eliminate or mitigate them. This safety talk discusses common unsafe conditions and mitigation actions to address the conditions.

Two Common Types of Unsafe Conditions

There is an endless list of possible unsafe conditions found on the job. Two types that can be found in almost any workplace are slip, trip, and fall hazards and pinch point hazards.

  1. Slips, trips, and falls are responsible for many injuries on the job year after year. Many of these incidents are a direct result of an unsafe condition. Objects on the ground are a common example. Other unsafe conditions that lead to slips, trips, and fall injuries include slippery floors, unmarked changes in elevations in walking surfaces, cluttered work areas, unprotected edges, open holes, etc.
  2. Pinch points are also commonly found in workplaces. Pinch points are defined as any point where it is possible for a body part to be caught between moving and stationary portions of equipment. Pinch points can come in a variety of shapes and sizes. A couple of examples of unsafe conditions relating to pinch points are points of operation on machinery, unguarded moving equipment, and rotating parts.

Addressing Unsafe Conditions

Depending on what the unsafe condition is, it will determine what action is needed to correct it. A basic overview of addressing any hazard in the workplace:

  • Stop and take the time to evaluate your work area and work task.
  • Recognize unsafe conditions or what can possibly turn into one.
  • Take action to immediately correct the condition if possible.
  • Stop work and involve other personnel to have the condition corrected if the situation requires you to do so.
  • Follow through to ensure any hazards you identified are properly mitigated.
  • Continue to evaluate your work area throughout the workday for possible new hazards.

unsafe conditions in the workplaceSummary

Unsafe conditions do exist all around us, and it is true that not every single possible hazard in life can be eliminated. However, we all can take ownership and responsibility for the work that we do to eliminate the ones we identify. Every unsafe condition that is corrected results in a lesser risk of someone being injured on the job.

Discussion point:

  1. What are some other examples of unsafe conditions that can be found at our worksite?

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