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Head to Toe Protection Tips for the Workplace

It’s the last line of defense between you and a life altering injury, do you know the proper safety products and how they should be used in order to make sure you are protecting your employees?

Do you train your staff on the importance using the products to keep them safe? Are you guilty of not bothering to provide the correct protections because you think it could “never happen at my store”? For starters: IT CAN HAPPEN TO YOU OR YOUR EMPLOYEES! Second, follow these simple tips to keep your employees safe!
 

Head:

Protect the head from traumatic brain injuries, they make up 22% of all work related fatalities. Even in a furniture warehouse the danger is real from falling object hazards. Espically if you employ any type of rack or overhead merchandise storage. Hard hats are broken down into 2 types and 3 classes, provide a hat that best fits the falling object hazard for your facility.
 

Hearing:

Measurement standards should be appropriate for the noise levels and spectral content specific to the environment being regulated. Meeting requirements is not enough. Even prolonged exposure to low frequency tonal noise (Low hum) can still be harmful. If you have any type of machinery in your facility that make loud operational noise from compactors to industrial shredders, hearing protection needs to be provided to your employees. Additional protections such as active ear defenders should be considered in areas of excessive of ongoing noise.
 

Respiratory:

When working around airborne particles or debris, be sure to wear the proper respirator for the hazard and change filters frequently. The life of these filters will vary depending on the concentration of the hazard, the storage conditions and age of the filter. Areas of concern in a typical furniture warehouse will be the touch up areas here aerosols are sprayed or use of vapor releasing topcoats or chemicals are employed. Don’t forget about areas that generate a lot of dust like compactors or industrial shredders.
 

Back:

1 in 5 workplace injuries are back related and 33% of injuries can be reduced with strength testing for appropriate tasks and proper lifting technique training. Avoid the common causes of force, repetition, and posture.
 

Hands:

72% of hand injuries were a result of hands not wearing gloves. Hazards associated with machinery and cutting are at the top of the list when it comes to workplace hand injuries, when reviewing and selecting gloves make note of flexibility, grip, cut and puncture resistance, chemical resistance and degradation. The appropriate gloves can also reduce losing grip on merchandise that could result in crushing damage to an employee’s foot or damage to the merchandise itself.
 

Feet:

Crushed, punctured, burned, shocked, sprained or broken. While often forgotten about, foot protection is just as important as the protection of the rest of your body, your footwear should provide both comfort and protection to ward off the hazards lurking around your facility. When lifting, moving or transporting furniture either individually or palletized, steel toe footwear can make the difference between an inconvenient merchandise drop and the loss of a productive employee.
 
With a few mindful employee training sessions and by supplying the appropriate safety gear you can keep your staff safe and productive.
 
Jef Spencer
HFA Operations
HFA Products Store

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