Occupational Health And Safety Is First Line Of Defense From Hazards

Hazards present themselves in the workplace in many different forms. The major categories of hazards include physical, biological, chemical, psychological, and social issues. A Certified Industrial Hygienist can visit your facility and identify hazards present.

Physical hazards are typically the most readily identifiable and range from fall hazards to workers in confined spaces. Each physical hazard presents different challenges that are typically overcome by implementing some form of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) or company policy. The PPE can be respirators for workers working in areas with dangerous fumes or steel toe boots to prevent heavy objects from breaking workers toes. Company policies can have a great impact on workers in confined spaces, by limiting the time each worker can be in that hazardous environment. Each physical hazard is important to properly identify and implement a solution to improve the wellbeing of the employee.

Biological hazards in the workplace could be bacteria or mold present in the workplace. Employees can become very ill when exposed to this type of hazard. The Certified Industrial Hygienist should inspect surfaces for the presence of biological hazards. If the facility has every had a flood or had water in an area for any length of time, it should be disclosed to the Certified Industrial Hygienist to ensure mold has not grown.

Chemical Hazards can offer a variety of challenges depending on the particular chemicals present. Some chemicals are corrosive, while others are extremely flammable. The manufacturer of the chemical is obligated to label each container with the potential hazards and provide a Material Safety Data Sheet to inform the purchaser of the dangers. The Certified Industrial Hygienist will ensure the workers have the appropriate training, equipment, and up-to-date materials needed.

Psychological or Social Issues can result from working in stressful environments which provide unique challenges. Air traffic controllers work in stressful situations that have huge consequences for mistakes. The Certified Industrial Hygienist has the training needed to identify the stressors and determine an appropriate action to help the employee in that environment.

Each work environment comes with unique challenges and the solutions implemented must be tailor for that specific environment. The Certified Industrial Hygienist must make an onsite visit to identify the unique challenges present to make the appropriate recommendations. The worker and company can benefit from the safer and healthier work environment. Click here to contact a Certified Industrial Hygienist to work with your company.