In 2010, more than 3.9 million workplace injuries and illnesses were reported, many of which were preventable. No significant changes to these statistics are expected for 2011. With the new year now in full swing, Cintas Corporation , the leader in first-aid and safety products, today identified the top five safety resolutions for 2012 to help safety professionals improve the health and wellness of their workplace.
“Workplace accidents result in lost productivity and excessive injury costs, directly impacting both workers and a business’ success,” says Tom Lally, director of Training and Compliance, First Aid & Safety, Cintas. “Following these resolutions will enable safety professionals to take their business beyond compliance and build a safer work environment in 2012.”
The top safety resolutions for 2012 include:
- Perform regular audits of workplace safety initiatives: Benchmark safety programs to establish a baseline of performance. Once this has occurred, regularly audit the program to ensure it is working. Solicit feedback from employees and work with third-party organizations to pinpoint areas that work well and/or need improvement.
- Set a zero-injury goal: Studies show that workplaces with higher employee engagement programs are less likely to have accidents, and that reducing the frequency of incidents allows worker productivity to remain high. To achieve a culture of safety, create prevention programs that exceed compliance regulations. Engage employees in the safety process by having them lead committees and facilitate safety audits.
- Offer training classes  that engage employees: Blended training programs that incorporate adult learning principles with traditional and technology-mediated learning is more likely to capture the attention of employees, and in turn, be more successful. In addition to adjusting meeting formats, focus the content of safety meetings on topics of interest to employees.
- Raise awareness of leading causes of workplace injuries: Overexertion from excessive lifting, falling objects, and slip and fall injuries are among the most common reported workplace incidents. Ensure that employees understand the conditions that lead to common injuries and the potential hazards associated with not following protocol. For example, to reduce slip and fall incidents, train personnel to clear excess liquid and objects from the floors immediately.
- Implement a first-aid cabinet: Having a first-aid cabinet in the workplace ensures emergency response can occur quickly in the event of an injury or illness. Cabinets provide a centralized location for bandages, aspirin and antibiotic ointment so employees know where to go should an accident occur. This also makes it easier to maintain inventory and keep track of items that need restocking.
“By developing engaging training programs and implementing attainable goals, safety professionals can create a safe work environment that protects workers and the company’s bottom line,” Lally says. “A successful workplace is one that views safety as a top priority year after year.”
For more information on first-aid and safety products, go to http://www.cintas.com/FirstAidSafety/ .