Are your workers safe from poisoning?

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If your business handles hazardous substances there’s a good chance that your employees are at risk of poisoning, either from one-off accidents or ongoing exposure.

So, how can you make sure that your workers are as safe as possible and are not at risk when handling poisonous chemicals?

The first step is to understand the hazards that employees are facing and the challenges these will bring to your company. If your factory uses a large number of potentially poisonous materials, it is important to make sure you understand the risks presented by these substances.

Once you know the risks in your workplace, the next challenge is to manage them appropriately. Safework Australia suggests a three step process to handle this – substitute hazardous goods for safer alternatives; isolate chemicals from employees and create handling controls to manage materials effectively.

If you cannot substitute or isolate hazards in your workplace, the only solution will be the third step – investing in handling products and storage solutions which minimise the risks to your employees. These small changes can ensure that your business remains compliant and keeps staff safe.

The last thing to remember when it comes to handling poisonous substances is to think long-term. Often poisons will act slowly over time, with repeated small exposures adding up to more substantial health issues down the line.

If you want to protect your workers from poisoning long-term, it is important to make sure that you are creating a safe work culture which doesn’t cut corners when it comes to everyday safety. Having the right processes in place for your day-to-day business activity can ensure that your staff are not exposed to dangerous levels of chemicals further down the track.

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