Safety at the Office: How to Keep Employees Safe from Hazards

Last Updated: 

November 1, 2023

When you think of injuries, you may imagine the usual injuries that occur at home, such as falls, burns, cuts, poisoning, and sprains. However, many of the injuries individuals sustain happen at work, too.

In fact, according to statistics, there were 4,764 “fatal” work injuries recorded in the United States in 2020, a 10.7% drop from 5,333 in 2019. With the rising rate of workplace injuries, it is your job as a business owner to put necessary plans in place to protect your staff, visitors, and of course, yourself from potential workplace hazards. Here are some tips on how to do that effectively.

Key Takeaways on Safety in the Office and Keeping Employees Safe:

  • Train Employees Adequately: Ensure employees are well-trained on how to use workplace tools safely. Machinery accidents can often result from inadequate training rather than equipment malfunction.
  • Test Workplace Appliances: Conduct PAT (portable appliance testing) on workplace appliances to ensure they are safe. This reduces the risk of electrical accidents, including electrocutions and fires.
  • Adopt Labels and Signs: Use labels and signs as a means to direct employees and warn them of potential hazards. They can alert workers to dangers like wet ground or exposed wires.
  • Implement Safety Rules from the Onset: Prioritise creating a safe environment from the beginning. This includes hiring qualified individuals and implementing safety rules. Encourage employees to report unsafe conditions, keep their workstations clean, wear protective equipment, take breaks, and leave problems to professionals.
  • Responsibility of Business Owners: Business owners are responsible for the safety of their employees. Prioritising employee safety can prevent potential lawsuits and ensure a safer working environment.

By implementing these strategies, businesses can create a safer environment for their employees, reducing the risk of workplace injuries and hazards.

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1. Train Employees Adequately

According to statistics, there were 14,625 occupational fatalities involving machinery from 1992 to 2010, leading to an annual average of 770 deaths. Injuries and deaths caused by machinery accidents are on the increase.

To ensure you don't experience such a catastrophe in your workplace, ensure you train employees on how to use workplace tools well and safely. Sometimes, machinery accidents aren't caused by a lack of protective gear or machine malfunction but by inadequate training. As outlined in Protex AI's workplace safety glossary, comprehensive training is a key component of accident prevention.

2. Test Workplace Appliances

Another effective way to guarantee workplace safety in Sussex is by conducting PAT (portable appliance testing) on workplace appliances.

PAT involves examining electrical appliances and equipment to ensure that they don't pose any hazard to a workplace. The goal of PAT Testing Sussex is to reduce the risk of electrical accidents, including electrocutions and fires caused by electrical appliances.

Ensure you contact a reliable PAT testing service to conduct regular inspections on your workplace appliances. How often you'll carry out PAT will depend on many factors such as the equipment type, equipment modification and repair, the class of equipment you have in your workplace, etc. For instance, class 1 equipment, including stationery and IT equipment, should be tested once every 48 months. Frequently used equipment should be tested regularly.

3. Adopt Labels and Signs in the Workplace

Labels and signs can serve as an important workplace safety tool. These tools act as a means for directing employees and as a deterrent in areas of potential hazards. Setting up caution and warning labels is a brilliant and cost-effective way to ensure the safety of workers in different conditions by alerting them of potential hazards like wet ground, naked wire, etc.

To convey messages effectively, ensure that all labels have a pictogram, a signal word, hazard and precautionary statements, the product identifier, and supplier identification. Of course, some of these requirements may not apply in your workplace setting. So choose them accordingly.

4. Implement Safety Rules from the Onset

Workplace safety is a marathon, not a sprint. You'll need to focus on creating a safe environment, even from day one. Your safety strategy should begin with hiring qualified individuals, especially those that are attentive to detail. A workplace filled with individuals who neglect safety requirements cannot be safe. In addition to hiring the right individuals, implement safety rules to prevent workplace injuries. You may also want to encourage employees to:

●     Report unsafe conditions

●     Keep a clean workstation

●     Prioritise the wearing of protective equipment

●     Take breaks

●     Maintain proper posture

●     Be alert and aware

●     Respect machinery and tool

●     Leave problems for professionals


Every business owner is responsible for the safety of employees in the workplace. So it is possible to get sued if you fail in your obligation. Of course, a good way to avoid that is by prioritising the safety of your employees, and what better way to start than implementing the tips above to protect your employees from hazards.

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