Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Near misses and the importance of early action




Updated October 2014

One of the key functions of the Kodiak poster programme is to help improve communications in the workplace. Not just communication from managers to employees – although we do address that too – but also communication from employees to managers. This is a major part of taking early action.

We can define early action as a promptly executed corrective or preventative measure. The principal can be used in a wide range of situations to reduce accidents, waste and damage and to limit the consequences of problems. Here are a few of the more common examples.

Near misses
The HSE defines a near miss as:

"any incident, accident or emergency
which did not result in an injury"

Incidents involving what the HSE defines as 'dangerous occurrences' are also reportable under RIDDOR.

An unreported near miss is an accident waiting to happen. For example if one employee trips on a loose paving slab but doesn't report it, the next employee who takes that route could suffer a more serious fall.

Equipment defects
Defective equipment poses several problems. Continuing to use it may endanger the operator, waste valuable resources or cause further damage to the equipment itself.

Employees can help by reporting defects found during pre-use checks or straight away if they present themselves during operation.

Most companies know only too well how quickly a small error or inaccuracy can snowball into a much bigger problem. Encouraging employees to report possible mistakes as soon as they are spotted can help to minimise further consequences.

Employee uncertainty
If an employee feels awkward or embarrassed about asking for help, they may be more inclined to proceed blindly with their task, even if they are unsure that what they are doing is correct.

Encouraging them to be open and to come forward quickly could prevent catastrophe further down the line.

Jobs getting out of control
It's important to monitor your progress throughout the course of a job. If things start to go haywire you risk missing deadlines and failing to deliver on your promises.

It pays to make sure your employees are alert to problems that could cause delays and that they report them as soon as possible.

If you would like to find out more about how Kodiak posters can promote the benefits of early action to your employees, please contact us.

For daily tips on dealing with common workplace issues, why not follow us on Twitter.
If you would like to find out how Kodiak posters 
can help your business work smoother, smarter 
and safer, please call us on: 01530 456 000 
or email us.

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