Every June, the National Safety Council and employers across the country hold events and education to reduce the leading causes of injury and death at work, on the road, in our homes and communities.
Each week focuses on a different preventable cause of injury. This year’s topics are:
- Week 1: Hazard Recognition
- Week 2: Slips, Trips and Falls
- Week 3: Fatigue
- Week 4: Impairment
Start by downloading the free NSM materials from the National Safety Council, then follow these tips to participate in National Safety Month:
Week 1: Hazard Identification
One common “root cause” of workplace injuries is the failure to identify hazards that are present. An effective hazard identification program is essential to keep workers safe.
- Collect information about potential hazards using a formal job hazard analysis.
- Periodically inspect the workplace to identify new or uncontrolled hazards — even if the worksite or task hasn’t changed.
- Review near miss observations to identify underlying hazards before they contribute to an accident.
Week 2: Slips, Trips and Falls
Slips, trips, and falls account for 1 in 6 lost-time work injuries. While slips, trips and falls are most common in construction, they can happen in any setting — even an office.
- Keep hallways and walkways clear of obstacles such as cables, cords, and boxes.
- Clean up spills immediately.
- Improve lighting so workers can see potential slip, trip and fall hazards
Week 3: Fatigue
Fatigue at work decreases employee productivity and increases the risk of injury. In fact, being awake for at least 24 hours is equal to having a blood alcohol content of 0.10% — higher than the legal limit in all states.
- Limit overtime for staff working long shifts, and ensure there is adequate time for employees to rest between shifts.
- Allow structured "safety naps" during parts of the work shift.
- Limit driving between the hours of 3-5AM, when drowsy driving is most likely to occur.
Week 4: Impairment
The use of alcohol, illegal drugs, legal drugs such as marijuana, and prescription medications can impact employees’ ability to perform work safely. In fact, 10-20% of American workers who die at work test positive for drugs or alcohol.
- Implement a pre-employment drug screening program.
- Know how to recognize the signs and symptoms of drug abuse.
- Encourage employees to report suspected drug use to a supervisor to prevent a deadly accident.
Next steps: Download the 2020 Safety Calendar
In addition to participating in National Safety Month and following the tips above, download the free 2020 safety calendar to help you plan your toolbox talks and training.