Is your child starting a new job? Two interesting articles have been published recently with regard to health and safety. One from the HSE and one from the EHS. In the article by the HSE they advised that new staff, especially those new to the workforce, are more like to be unaware of existing or potential risks are at particular risk of injury. In health and safety law, a young person is anyone under 18 and a child is anyone who has not yet reached the official minimum school leaving age.
The other article is about a new study, Digital Distraction & Workplace Safety, issued by Screen Education that showed staff spend up to 2.5 hours a day on their phone whilst at work on content unrelated to their job. In addition to killing productivity, this degree of distraction causes accidents — 14% of respondents said at least one accident had occurred at their workplace because an employee was distracted by their smartphone. These accidents had serious consequences:
- 59% caused property damage
- 50% caused injury or death
From a technology view many accidents are preventable e.g. taking extra care whilst drinking at your desk, particularly hot drinks. Pulling out all plugs before fixing a jam in a photocopier, or changing computer leads. Mobile phones are also a distraction and can cause accidents. Simple tasks that take a minute however most people forget, particularly new young staff who may not even be aware of the danger.
6 steps to protect new workers
The HSE article goes on to give 6 steps to protect new workers:
- Assess the new starter’s capabilities
- Plan and provide an induction
- Make sure control measures to protect against risks are up to date and being properly used and maintained
- Provide relevant information, instruction and training
- Provide adequate supervision
- Check workers have understood the information, instruction and training they need to work safely in their new job