Provided by: Three Sixty Safety
Common Sense and Safety
Serious accidents can happen when you take safety for granted. Consider this situation: a man was adding fuel to his lawnmower. He poured some gasoline, then took a step back with the open fuel can in his hand. Meanwhile, his neighbor walked up behind him with a lit cigarette. The can touched the cigarette and the explosion burned both men.
This accident was due to a lack of safety awareness. The man with the fuel can should have ensured there were no open flames in the vicinity, while the man with the cigarette should have checked that there were no flammable materials present.
Taking things for granted often involves multiple safety violations, such as poor communication, not being alert and taking unsafe risks. Making assumptions when it comes to safety leads to serious accidents and injuries.
Check and Double-check
Always check for proper safety precautions and mechanisms, and double-check when necessary.
Check tools for flaws or malfunctions before using them. Do not assume they are fine just because they were yesterday.
Look before you step out into an aisle, even if power trucks and other equipment do not usually travel there.
Never assume a situation is safe unless you verify for yourself. For instance, do not trust that a ladder that you come upon is secured properly unless you double-check it yourself.
Personality Traits Can Lead to Accidents
In a recent study of characteristics of accident-prone employees, one of the personality factors associated with repeated injuries was self-assurance. These individuals are too confident that nothing will go wrong, rather than making sure safety procedures are followed. Confidence is good while working in hazardous conditions, but overconfidence can make someone take unnecessary chances, which often leads to accidents and injuries.
Another accident factor was found to be the desire for dominance. Accident repeaters tend to have decided opinions of their own, and comparatively little regard for the opinions of others or for safety rules. Just because you are experienced or knowledgeable in a certain area does not mean it is okay to ignore safety precautions.
Safety for Everyone’s Sake
People who take safety for granted and think that they know best are often the most prone for accidents. It is important to remember that safety is a group initiative, and that everyone needs to follow safety precautions and avoid taking risks to maintain a safe workplace.
If any misunderstandings or questions develop concerning your job, clear them up right away by consulting your supervisor. Never take safety for granted!
This Safety Matters flyer is for general informational purposes only, and is not intended as medical or legal advice.