Safe work procedures are directions on how work is to be carried out safely. It’s all about identifying hazards and clarifying what must be done to eliminate or control those hazards. For example, if your workers operate plant or equipment there will need to be risk assessment conducted then controls measures and procedures put in place to ensure safe systems of work area maintained.
WHEN IS A SAFE WORK PROCEDURE REQUIRED
Not all tasks require a written safe work procedure. To decide whether or not a written procedure is required, consider the following:
How severe would the consequences of an incident be?
How often is the task done?
How complex is the task?
In general, written safe work procedures are needed for:
Complicated tasks, so that important steps don’t get missed.
Frequently performed tasks
When workers need reminders about the hazards and how to control the risks.
WHAT KIND OF TASK REQUIRES SAFE WORK PROCEDURES?
Examples of common tasks in the hospitality industry that may require written safe work procedures include the following:
Disposing of hot oil
Cleaning bathrooms, ovens, or swimming pools
Using kitchen equipment
Examples of safe work procedures include:
Locking out equipment
Working alone or in isolation
Working with chemicals
Operating Plant and Equipment
Conducting an emergency evacuation
Display the procedures prominently at the locations where the tasks are performed or next to the equipment used for the tasks. Supervisors and Managers will find them helpful in training workers in how to do their jobs safely. Workers are then responsible for following the procedures. Written safe work procedures help eliminate or minimise the risks of hazardous tasks. When training has been conducted ensure the worker signs off on a training attendance form and a record is kept of the training.
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT (PPE)
Written safe work procedures must list any required personal protective equipment and when it must be used. Certain tasks require the use of more than one type of PPE. For example, workers may need to dilute concentrated, corrosive chemicals such as cleaning agents before using them. PPE required for this task may include face and eye protection such as goggles or face shields, as well as skin protection such as rubber gloves. To determine the appropriate type of PPE, check the product Safety Data Sheet for the chemical.
HOW DO I DEVELOP WRITTEN SAFE WORK PROCEDURES?
The process of developing a written safe work procedure includes the following steps:
- Determine the overall task that requires a safe work procedure.
- Break down the task into its basic steps.
- Identify the hazards associated with each step, and ways to eliminate or make safe the risks to workers from these hazards.
- Write the safe work procedure detailing the list of actions that the worker must perform to complete the job safely.
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