Safety

Safety applies primarily to humans but also to physical property. Safety consciousness has been raised significantly by legislation governing minimum standards for occupational safety, health and workers compensation.

Employers are generally required to provide a place of employment free from recognised hazards that are likely to cause injury or death. This includes free and accessible means of egress, aisles and working areas free of debris, floors free from hazards, specific requirements for machines, equipment and materials, specified fire protection by fixed or portable systems, clean lunch rooms, environmental health controls adequate sanitation facilities.

 

Some of the legislation governing industrial safety in India are:

 

The Central Labour Institutes and Regional Training Institutes conduct various training programmes on Industrial safety. View the training calendar for the current year.

 

Tips for Ensuring Safety of Physical Resources 

EMERGENCY EXITS

Design: Correct number of exits: location widths: doors opening out: open to street or open space leading to a street.

Identification: Clearly visible day and night

Access and Egress: Clear, safe, unobstructed passage to and from the exit: where security requires doors to be locked, keys should be readily available.

Lighting: Well lit at all times when personnel are in the building

FIRE EQUIPMENT

 

Extinguisher

 

 

 

Fire Sprinklers

 

Fire Hoses

Position: Securely hung: right heights: handy to hazard area: prominently displayed: not a traffic obstruction: correct type of extinguisher for the nature of the expected fire.

 

Identification: Clearly marked for its use.

Access: Clear, unobstructed: free from foreign material.

Inspection: Correct inspection tag: undamaged: seals unbroken: nozzle hole clear.

 

Look for leaks, damaged heads: materials stored correct distance below sprinkler heads: access and identification.

 

Hose Condition: correctly folded in carrier: nozzles attached: dry: unperished: access and identification.

ELECTRICITY

Power Leads: Cables and leads: condition: clear of passageways and floors: joins and connections: lead supports: location.

Switchgear: Guards and operation: condition and fit: contacts: clean and undamaged.

Motors: Connections and covers: cleanliness and maintenance: overheating: smoke: smell: slow running.

Signs and Safety Locks: Provision and use when carrying out maintenance.

AISLEWAYS

Free from Obstruction: Machine obstruction: equipment, stock, tripping hazards.

Surface: Slippery: broken surface.

STAIRWAYS

Design: Width: handrails: tread: (actual and projected): rise: surface: nosing: landings: guard rails.

Maintenance: Worn or slippery section: tripping hazards.

Lighting: Lighting adequate and operating

LANDINGS

Design: Strength: guard rails: openings: toe boards: head height.

Maintenance: Cleanliness: surface: slipping and tripping hazards.

Lighting: Adequate for all shifts.

FLOOR

Cleanliness: Wet or greasy spots: slippery.

Surface: Rough: dips and rises: broken tiles: manholes and pits protected: drains clear: tripping hazards.

 

 

Potential Hazards

To maintain safety in the business premises, the maintenance manager should keep a check and guard against following hazards:

a) Floors, aisles, stairs, and walkways

  • Oil spills or other slippery substances which might result in an injury-producing fall.
  • Litter, obscuring hazards such as electrical floor plugs, projecting material, or material which might contribute to the fuelling of a fire.
  • Electrical wire, cable, pipes, or other objects, crossing aisles which are not clearly marked nor properly covered.
  • Stairways which are too steep, have no non-skid floor covering, inadequate or nonexistent railings, or those which are in a poor state of repair.
  • Overhead walkways which have inadequate railings, are not covered with non-skid material, or which are in a poor state of repair.
  • Walks and aisles which are exposed to the elements and have not been cleared of snow or ice, which are slippery when wet or which are in a poor state of repair.

 

b) Doors and emergency exists

  • Doors that are ill-fitting, stick, and which might cause a slow-down during emergency evacuation.
  • Panic-type hardware which is inoperative or in a poor state of repair.
  • Doors which have been designated for emergency exit but which are locked and not equipped with panic-type hardware.
  • Doors which have been designated for emergency exit but which are blocked by equipment or by debris.
  • Missing or burned-out emergency exit lights.
  • Non-existent or poorly marked routes leading to emergency exit doors.

 

c) Flammable and other dangerous material

  • Flammable gases and liquids which are uncontrolled, in areas in which they might constitute a serious threat.
  • Radio-active material not properly stored or handled.
  • Paint or painting areas which are not properly secured or which are in areas that are poorly ventilated.
  • Petrol pumping areas located dangerously close to operations which are spark producing or in which open flame is being used.

 

d) Protective equipment or clothing

  • Workmen in areas where toxic fumes are present who are not equipped with or who are not using respiratory protective apparatus.
  • Workmen involved in welding, drilling, sawing, and other eye-endangering occupations who have not been provided or who are not wearing protective eye covering.
  • Workmen in areas requiring the wearing of protective clothing, due to exposure to radiation or toxic chemicals, who are not using such protection.
  • Workmen engaged in the movement of heavy equipment or materials who are not wearing protective footwear.
  • Workmen who require prescription eyeglasses who are not provided or are not wearing safety lenses.

 

e) Vehicle operation and parking

  • Forklifts which are not equipped with audible and visual warning devices when backing.
  • Trucks which are not provided with a guide when backing into a dock or which are not properly locked while parked.
  • Speed violations by cars, trucks, lifts, and other vehicles being operated within the protected area;
  • Vehicles which are operated with broken, insufficient, or non-existent lights during the hours of darkness.
  • Vehicles which constitute a hazard due to poor maintenance procedures on brakes and other safety-related equipment.
  • Vehicles which are parked in fire lanes, blocking fire lanes, or blocking emergency exits.

 

f) Machinery maintenance and operation

  • Frayed electrical wiring which might result in a short circuit or malfunction of the equipment.
  • Workers who operate presses, work near or on belts, conveyors, and other moving equipment who are wearing loose fitting clothing which might be caught and drag them into the equipment.
  • Presses and other dangerous machinery which are not equipped with the required hand guards or with automatic shut-off devices or dead man controls.

 

g) Welding and other flame- or spark-producing equipment

  • Welding torches and spark-producing equipment being used near flammable liquid or gas storage areas or being used in the vicinity where such products are dispensed or are part of the productive process.
  • The use of flame- or spark-producing equipment near wood shavings, oily machinery, or where they might damage electrical wiring.

 

References:
  • "Physical Assets Management”, GM Services Management Pty Ltd, Australia
  • Business Portal of India