A safe workspace starts with proper employee training. This is not an area to gloss over at staff meetings. Safety needs to be taken seriously for the well-being of your employees and to be OSHA compliant. In fact, one of OSHA’s first sentences in their workplace safety training handbook says: “employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace. No person should ever have to be injured, become ill, or die for a paycheck.” This shows the emphasis they put on employer responsibility and employee expectations. At a minimum, your business needs an action plan for basic emergencies and workplace hazards and a fire prevention plan and exit strategy. Any safety and health training you provide should be well documented, noting each employee that completes training, to cover yourself in the event of an unfortunate workplace accident.
CPR and AED Certification
It is recommended by OSHA for employees to be trained in first aid response, including CPR. This is not a requirement for all businesses and employees, but the list of who is required is getting longer every year. Careers such as fitness professionals, childcare providers, school personnel, and flight attendants are on the must-have list for CPR training. Employees should get recertified annually to perform CPR safely, and first aid training should be revisited about every three years. For added security at your workplace, training a percentage of your employees in AED use will be beneficial. This one requires a bit more time, so you’ll want to be sure to have a reliable, long-term employee(s) go through this training. A defibrillator can be easy to use and even untrained users may be able to place the pads and provide a shock, however, a shock is not always needed, and training of when and how to correctly apply the AED is crucial. It takes an average of 7-8 minutes for an ambulance to arrive after 911 has been called, and a heart attack can kill someone in just 4 minutes. CPR administration and AED knowledge can literally be the difference between life and death for your employee.
Injury Treatment and First Aid
Minimize downtime, lower workers comp claims, and provide your employees with peace of mind by providing current first aid training. Go a step further by adding specialized injury treatment training for a portion of your employees. Your employees will feel more confident knowing someone on site has learned skills such as stopping bleeding, minimizing swelling, and wrapping sprains. Choking hazards can be just as serious as a heart attack, with a blocked airway being fatal in about 4-7 minutes.
Each business runs a little differently, which means your training will need to be unique to you and your employees. A customized, current training program will give your employees the right tools to handle hazards or accidents that may come their way. Safety should always be first, and the more practice and knowledge you give your employees, the more confident and productive your team will be.