How to Conduct a Workplace Inspection
Workplace inspections help detect hazards and the risk quotient of a workplace as far as injury-prone zones go. Through such inspections, you get to know your workplace’s current state and mitigate unsafe working areas from cropping up. Below we’ll show you how to conduct a workplace inspection to keep you and your employees safe.
Generally, a holistic inspection program would entail daily equipment inspections, inspections when launching a startup space, testing mobile devices prior to use, daily/weekly inspections by supervisors, and weekly/monthly departmental inspections. Besides routine scheduled inspections, your workplace should also be inspected after an incident or when new equipment or a work process has been added.
Performing an Inspection
There are certain guidelines that must be adhered to when conducting inspections, to locate potentially injury-causing hazardous activities and conditions and to take necessary measures. Have a checklist in place to jot down the hazards you see or expect in a particular work area or process. You should also speak with your employees to learn more about their working mechanisms and their safety adherence levels. Get to know their concerns relating to safety and health, and take note of any unsafe scenarios or conditions you may observe.
Things to Focus On
Focus on common worker tasks, which includes confined space entry, material handling, workplace violence, etc. Segment different problematic zones for much better focus. The things to look into include:
- unaddressed issues from past inspection report(s)
- employee non-adherence to correct work procedures
- improper material storage
- liquid zones such as greasy floors and no safety alert signs
- no equipment protection
- no see-through swinging doors
- poor equipment maintenance, etc.
In case there’s a problem, don’t just look at the specific issue but get to the root cause so that the problem doesn’t arise again later. For instance, mopping a wet floor is not good enough – finding out the reason why the floor was wet would lead to the real solution.
There are certain guidelines relating to concluding workplace inspections. It’s a legal requirement to address major workplace hazards right away. For instance, if the ladder is broken, it must be repaired or replaced with a new one immediately. Remedy issues based on their magnitude and importance. If the smaller tasks can be assigned to your subordinates, kindly do so. Don’t take all the action into your hands. Sharing responsibilities will help get the work done sooner.
Keep your workers in the loop, and let them know if there’s a security or safety flaw. All your findings and reports should be easily accessible to the safety committee so that the inspection process and reports are reviewed regularly, and any lapses in the inspection protocol or measures get addressed.
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