Does your job involve working with dangerous equipment and tools? If so, workplace safety is no doubt at the top of your priorities. Yet even with the most diligent approach to safe work practices, it is still possible to have blind spots.
At Sheer Workplace Training, our extensive experience in the construction industry has given us in-depth insights into safety procedures and how to avoid the inevitable blind spots that can see you or a colleague injured or worse.
In this guide, we’ll take a look at how to further proof your work area and stay safe.
Safety Tips For Safe Operations In Your Workplace
As experts in safety training, here are our top tips for staying safe around power tools, heavy machinery and other dangerous equipment in the workplace.
1. Read The Manual
Used this piece of equipment before and think you’re fine to just go and get started? The reality is that even small differences in equipment can lead to mistakes during their operation. With mistakes often come avoidable workplace accidents.
Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions outlined in the manual to learn about your equipment. If you don’t have a manual, find one online or contact the company for a copy. Making this information easily accessible is a key component of optimal health and safety practices in the workplace.
2. Get Trained
Before you use any dangerous equipment, make sure you receive proper training from a qualified instructor. When it comes to specific equipment such as forklifts, EWPs or similar, there is a legal requirement that you hold the necessary licensing before using them.
Simply having your colleague show you what to do is not acceptable and is in breach of safe work guidelines. If you are unsure where to find appropriate training courses or need assistance in paying for them, reach out to your employer. There is a wealth of financial support available for those that need safety training or targeted equipment training including the BERT training fund and Jetco Funding.
3. Inspect Your Equipment
Thoroughly inspect your equipment before each use. Check for any damage or wear and tear that could cause problems. Even if everything has been running perfectly the day before, you should still check your equipment before using it each day.
This is one of the simplest and easiest ways to protect employees and yourself from unexpected problems.
4. Use The Right Safety Gear
When working with dangerous equipment, always wear the appropriate safety gear, such as gloves, goggles and personal protective equipment (PPE).
Even though these items may be uncomfortable at times or feel like a hassle to locate, they can significantly reduce injuries and protect you from coming to harm.
5. Follow All Safety Procedures
Strictly follow all safety procedures when using dangerous equipment. This will help to keep you and those around you safe.
Never be tempted to skip a step in a safety check or get too comfortable with the equipment. It is when your guard is down or you become lax with your approach to safety that accidents can and will happen.
6. Use Caution
Use caution when working with dangerous equipment. If something doesn’t feel right, you should immediately stop and assess the situation. Being alert and aware can go a long way towards preventing workplace accidents.
7. Ask For Help
If you’re not sure how to use a piece of equipment safely, don’t be afraid to ask for help from a supervisor or another qualified individual. It is the responsibility of everyone in the workplace to support safe practices. There is no shame in asking for help, it demonstrates a genuine desire to keep yourself and others safe. After all, everyone deserves to go home to their loved ones at the end of the work day.
By following these tips, you can help to ensure your safety while working with dangerous equipment.
No matter how diligent and cautious you may be in the workplace, it is essential you also remain up to date with your training. Many licenses for heavy machinery and plant equipment expire, it is your responsibility to check that your licensing and training remain up-to-date and valid.
Alongside essential safety training and training specific to the use of dangerous equipment, we recommend that all employees working in proximity to this equipment be trained in first aid. While we all hope these skills are never needed, having staff that know what to do in an emergency can make all the difference.
What If My Workplace Is Unsafe?
We encourage all workplaces to regularly assess their approach to training team members and have measures in place to track when this needs updating.
If, as an employee, you have concerns about safe work practices at your workplace, it is vital that you bring these concerns to the attention of your supervisor. If your workplace ignores your concerns or fails to address safety risks, you can report this to SafeWork and/or your union representative.
Where To Find Help
No matter your work environment, whether you are construction workers operating machinery on a construction site, a tradesperson using dangerous equipment in a confined space, or even a warehouse worker, following the correct safety procedures is essential.
Our tailored and engaging training programs are delivered by trainers with hands-on experience and a genuine desire to enhance workplace safety. We offer courses for:
- How to work safely at heights
- How to work safely in confined spaces
- Forklift licensing
- Safe operation of EWPs
- EWP A Yellow card
- Verification of Competence (V.O.C)
- GCIT card
- Operating an excavator, backhoe/loader, roller, bobcat, telescopic equipment and more
No matter your training needs, our team can help. With a proven track record of helping individuals and workplaces engage in safe work practices, Sheer Workplace Training is the trusted team you can count on.
Our goal is to see every individual that works with dangerous equipment in their workplace return home safely at the end of their shift.
To learn more about our available courses including eligibility, assessment criteria, costs and more, contact Sheer Workplace Training today at 07 3901 0804.