Welcome to our blog series featuring Topics for Safety meetings. Every year in America, nearly 4 million people suffer a workplace injury from which some may never recover.* So while we may immediately assume that safety meetings are best conducted in hazardous workplaces, it is necessary to have frequent safety meetings in any type of workplace environment. These posts are designed for the business owner, safety officer or any compliance related professional to use as a building block for their own safety meetings and are not to be used as a final resource for safety compliance laws or regulations.
As a supplier of exit and emergency lighting, it is logical for us to start this series with emergency evacuation awareness. Preparation for an emergency incident plays a vital role in ensuring that employers and workers have the necessary equipment, know where to go and how to stay safe when an emergency does occur. Before presenting this topic to employees at your safety meeting, ask yourself: Do I know the who, what, when and where of our emergency evacuation procedure? Make copies of the evacuation routes at your facility to hand out. For a small facility, repeated evacuation drills may not be necessary, but a quick walk-through every few months will help ensure that all employees receive the same information run through.
Show the employees the type of exit signs or emergency egress signs in use at your facility. Do you have signage indicating there is a stairwell to use? Is there an area of refuge for handicapped persons and is it marked? Are Braille signs appropriately used? This will help you assess the needs of your employees and make sure that your signage and procedures are up to date. Even if your signage is perfectly adequate per your local building standards, drawing attention to them will increase awareness and therefore preparedness in an emergency situation.