Did you know that there are specific hazards in the workplace during the vacation season?
In order to protect your employees, you may want to provide them with additional training on the following topics:
- Staying focused
- Dangers of rushing
- Dangers of fatigue
- Dangers of stress
Stress, fatigue and rushing are the main causes of accidents and injuries at this time of the year. It is important that employees stay focused on the task at hand. The hazards mentioned above can be avoided if proper precautions are taken.
We all tend to deal with a lot of distractions during the holiday season. Planning dinners, hosting friends and family, buying gifts or decorating our homes and gardens. We definitely keep busy this time of year. But that’s no excuse for us to lose our concentration at work.
As an employer, you may want to have a discussion with your workers about the importance of keeping their minds from wandering in the middle of a job, especially if high-risk work is being performed.
Dangers of rushing
Rushing can be caused by two different things at this time of year. The first is when workers take shortcuts or rush through work to get home to their families. No matter the reason, make sure your employees are not sacrificing their safety by rushing through the job.
The second has to do with the employer’s year-end demands. Some industries have certain deadlines, quotas or milestones they aim to achieve by the end of the year. This can have a direct impact on employees, especially when it comes to earning a bonus.
Often haste leads to mistakes, which can be more costly to the employer. If the work has to be redone, it is more time and materials for which the company has to pay. And if errors lead to injury, those costs can also be significant.
Therefore, encourage your workers to continue their work at a steady pace. The risk is simply not worth it.
Dangers of fatigue
Workers are more likely to experience fatigue during the vacation season. This can be attributed to one of two things:
- Working more hours / overtime shifts
- Nights at home / stress from home
Some employees are more than happy to work long hours or take on extra shifts. But if they don’t get enough sleep, it can affect their performance and safety. To minimize risks, it would be advisable to review your policy on the maximum number of hours worked per shift, and per workweek.
Stress from home can also cause worker fatigue. For example, by staying up several nights later than usual. Review the importance of staying hydrated, eating well and getting enough sleep.
Stress can be caused by any of the above hazards. Workers may feel pressured to meet year-end deadlines, but in addition, they may be stressed by issues such as buying gifts for their children. Even if an employee has a vacation planned, he or she may be concerned about having to miss work.
If you see a worker who appears to be overly stressed, make sure his or her supervisor or the Human Resources department knows about it. It is possible to prepare employee assistance programs for these cases.
Stress can frustrate an employee and cause him or her to lose concentration. Help them relieve their stress by creating an open and safe work environment. Be there to help your employees in difficult times.
Keep your workers safe
The holiday season has arrived. Keep these tips in mind and be aware of the dangers of stress, fatigue and rushing. Ensure that workers are focused on the task at hand. Doing so could help prevent accidents and injuries in the coming weeks.