Ready for another round of hand safety tips? Our last post about hand safety tips was well received, so we thought we’d give you 6 more hand safety tips. If you haven’t yet read it, you can find our first hand safety tips blog here.
In honor of National Safety Month, we'll be sharing all kinds of safety resources like brochures, videos, and even sample pairs of Ringers Gloves.Now, on to the hand safety tips. To recap, last time we discussed:
- Protective clothing
- Choosing the right glove
- Situations to avoid
- Tool guards
- Hazard analysis
Today, we’ll discuss 6 ways to improve hand safety:
- Injury trends
- Training programs
- Equipment upgrades
- Educating supervisors
- Safe work practices
The best protection is best-in-class gloves.
Request a sample pair of Ringers Gloves and see for yourself
1) INJURY TRENDS
Data doesn't lie. Review your organization’s accident and injury records to identify trends or recurring incidents. Specifically, you’re looking for first aid records, near miss reports, OSHA 300 logs, and accident reports. Look for patterns in the data – which injuries are most common? Are there areas in your workplace where injures are more frequent?Now that you evaluated injury trends, you can identify potential solutions. If cut injuries are recurring, consider upgrading your hand protection. If injuries occur across multiple business divisions, training might be required (more on that in the next section). Evaluating workplace risks sheds light on your most common and costly injuries.
Identify your workplace’s injury trends, and design solutions or training programs to reduce hand injuries.
2) TRAINING PROGRAMS
The benefits of training programs are two-fold; new employees receive proper training (which is often required by law), and seasoned employees can refresh their knowledge on hazards and safe working practices.Depending on your industry, training programs can take many forms, but most will include:
- Safe work practices to reduce risk
- Potential hand hazards in the workplace
- Types of hand injuries that may occur
- Proper fit, form, and function of gloves
Conduct frequent training programs for new and existing employees
Granted, this may not be the most exciting tip, but it’s an influential one. Keeping workstations clean and clear can significantly reduce hand injuries. Metal shavings, small parts, tools, and chemical spills are frequently found on workstations, causing cuts, lacerations, and chemical burns. This shouldn’t be overlooked, as the average hand injury claim has now exceeded $6,000, with individual workers’ compensation claims reaching nearly $7,500.
Keep work areas clean and free of shavings, parts, and chemical spills.
4) EQUIPMENT UPGRADES AND EQUIPMENT REENGINEERING
Some injuries are caused by human error, others by equipment. Outdated equipment can cause unavoidable hazards, no matter how good your PPE may be, so evaluate your workplace equipment with a safety expert. Refer back to your hand injury trends to see if upgrades could help reduce these incidents.
Equipment can also be re-engineered to reduce hand injuries. This could mean installing machine guards, adding ventilation systems, or two-handed safety control interlocks to prevent equipment from operating when hands are in the danger zone. Re-engineered equipment can immediately reduce risk of injury, with the added bonus of reinforcing best practices and reducing repetitive motion injuries.
Evaluate your equipment’s need for upgrades, re-engineering, or process improvements.
5) EDUCATING SUPERVISORS
No one knows the worksite like employees – the hazards, the state of equipment, and the available PPE are unique to each organization.
That’s why it’s crucial that front-line supervisors should maintain open communication with all divisions of the workplace. Employees should feel comfortable reporting issues or concerns. In turn, supervisors must relay this to responsible parties – business owners, management, HSE, or procurement.
Maintaining an open dialogue can help identify and reduce hazards that cause hand injuries and promote a regular discussion about hand safety in your organization.
Encourage constant communication between employees, supervisors, and management.
6) SAFE WORK PRACTICESSome workplaces are more dangerous than others. According to the National Safety Council, the five industries with the largest number of workplace injuries resulting in days away from work include:
- Public service (includes police and fire fighters)
- Installation, maintenance, and repair
But regardless of your industry, establish safe work practices to improve safety in the workplace
- Use the right tool for the task at hand Ban ringers, bracelets, or other jewelry on the worksite
- Limit the use of chemicals to the smallest amount required to complete the job
- Compare PPE requirements with your current equipment and replace if needed
- Remove unnecessary items from walkways, isles, and other high-traffic areas
These 6 hand safety tips should keep your company busy. But if you want more, or if you missed the first post, check out 5 ways to improve hand safety here.
If you want more safety tips, videos, brochures, or other free safety resources, subscribe to our blog.