Manufacturing is a tough industry. As part of the supply chain, it is a crucial yet risky profession, as heavy machines operate at all hours of the day to produce thousands of goods or products to be shipped to distributors nationwide. There’s much to consider regarding the safety and productivity of workers, like slips, insufficient machine guarding, electrocution, and miscommunication. While potentially serious, even these issues are avoidable. Just use some of these best ways to improve safety in manufacturing to ensure everyone a safe work environment.
Prioritize Clear Communication
One of the simplest ways to ensure everyone’s protected at your manufacturing plant is to prioritize clear communication. With communication devices at the ready—two-way radio, telecom, cell phone, and tablets—there’s no reason there shouldn’t already be clear communication present. Still, if communication at your plant is lacking, be sure to inform employees of regular check-ins and walkthroughs. Even using a manufacturing management system ensures you know where everyone is at all times.
Educate and Train New and Experienced Employees
Relatedly, whether employees are new to the job or have years of experience under their belt, make sure all employees receive the same training and education. Of course, that doesn’t mean neglect specialized training for specific machines or duties. However, with continual base knowledge of workplace expectations, quality control, and safety practices, everyone understands the proper protocols in place. If you’re under a time crunch or stressed over product standards, consider hiring a third-party safety compliance consultant. They have the knowledge and experience to implement general and specific workplace safety measures to protect employees from workplace hazards.
Perform Regular Equipment Checks
With a lot of heavy machinery operating at all hours of the day, performing regular equipment checks is one of the most essential ways to improve safety in manufacturing. Performing routine maintenance checks is also known as preventative maintenance. Ultimately, preventative maintenance ensures each machine or piece of equipment operates accordingly. It reduces any lags in production and potential safety risks for operators. Preventative repairs also keep you in line with OSHA standards since they reduce any auditory and visual hindrances that come from broken equipment.
Keep a Tidy Workspace
Another great yet simple way to reduce workplace accidents is to keep a tidy work environment. Manufacturing workspaces get continual foot traffic, so clutter is normal, but should also be taken care of right away. Keep your workspace clutter-free with frequent cleaning. Whether it’s misplaced tools, equipment, supplies, or paperwork, a dirty manufacturing plant inhibits productivity and increases environmental hazards. Do your due diligence and keep a clean floor space to mitigate these issues.