Hand injuries are one the most common types of injuries in both construction and in general industry. The reason for this is pretty simple. Employees that are working with their hands may not have been wearing the proper Personal Protective Equipment. Perhaps a lack of safety inspections and safety discipline allowed not wearing gloves to become an acceptable practice?
Gloves, How Do I Control the Cost?
Gloves can play a huge role in minimizing hand injuries. However, when gloves are issued that are too bulky, the wrong size, or are uncomfortable. Workers remove them to complete the tasks that they are assigned. One of our favorite best practices is to call Jeff Bayer at ABCO Safety 513-604-0858 and have him come out with several different types of gloves. You can then try them on, and select the gloves you need for your company. Include these gloves in your safety program and material order forms. Require whoever orders the equipment to account for safety equipment every week. All sizes must be in stock for workers to use at a moment’s notice. Now that we have a guideline for the best type of glove, with the best fit for our workers, everybody will need to wear them anytime there is a risk of hand injury.
The next step in making sure that all workers return home with no hand injuries, is to make sure that all of the equipment has been properly guarded. Having a guard removed from a tool or piece of equipment is a recipe for disaster. Many workers have been injured this way. When a guard needs to be removed for servicing, that piece of equipment must be locked out and tagged out while being serviced. All tools and machinery must be de-energized before repair, or service.
Promote Hazard Awareness
The last step in creating a safe atmosphere for workers’ hands is to promote hazard awareness. You want your workers to stop and think before they do something. Most of the time hand related injuries can be avoided if a worker were to slow down and ask themselves this question: What could go wrong here, and how could it affect me?
Hand injuries are some of the most common injuries in the workplace. With the help of proper PPE and engineering controls, we can send everybody home at the end of their shift with all of their fingers attached, and no lacerations.
Can anyone contribute a time that a hand injury was involved at your work? Can anyone recall a near miss or accident that could’ve been prevented?
Disclaimer: The information and suggestions contained in these safety talks are believed to be reliable. However, the authors of the topics and the owners of this web site accept no legal responsibility for the correctness, sufficiency, or completeness of such information or suggestions contained within these topics. These guidelines do not super cede local, state, or federal regulations and must not be construed as a substitute for, or legal interpretation of, any OSHA regulations