Most facilities spend a lot of time, effort and financial resources working to remain compliant with regulations from OSHA and other organizations. While this is good, and certainly necessary, it is important to ask whether it is sufficient.
The regulatory organizations provide guidelines and requirements that are meant to be the minimum acceptable levels of safety. In order to help keep employees and the facility itself as safe as possible, however, it is a good idea to attempt to exceed all the strict requirements that are put in place.
In addition, going further than strict compliance requires will help ensure you are ready in the event that additional regulations are put in place in the future.
How to look at Regulations
One of the best ways to help improve the safety operations of your facility is to change the way you view the regulations that are put in place. Rather than trying to figure out how your facility will remain in compliance with the regulations, look at them as a starting point from which you can build off of.
For example, every facility is required to have signs that identify emergency exits. This is a great start, but you can take it to the next level by creating 5S methodology signs to identify any number of important areas in the facility. This will not only help to improve safety, but will also benefit efficiency and eliminate waste throughout the facility.
Incorporate Regulations into Efficiency Strategies
Another great way to improve your facility is to start incorporating OSHA regulations into your overall efficiency strategies. For example, if there is a regulation stating that you need to label certain chemicals in the facility, you can take it a step further and label all chemicals (whether required or not).
If you have to label some chemicals anyway, it is going to only take a small amount of effort to do the rest. Having an industrial label maker on site, for example, will allow you to print off any type of label that you would like for any container that is present.
These labels will allow everyone to know what each container has in it with just a glance. They can then act accordingly without wasting time by looking it up or putting people in danger by accidently grabbing the wrong items.
Predicting Future Regulations
Another important strategy is to attempt to predict what types of regulations may be put in place in the future. With the understanding that regulatory agencies are always looking to improve safety, you can often put policies in place that will help ensure you are at or above compliance before a regulation is even announced.
For example, while there are many industries where it is not a requirement to identify safe walking zones inside the facility (these would be areas where indoor vehicles can’t travel), it is possible that these requirements will be made at some point.
With that, as well as the overall safety of your facility, in mind, you can start using floor marking tape to identify where things like high-lows should drive, and where people should walk. This can help to immediately improve safety and cut down on the risk of accidents and injuries. Even though it is not yet a requirement, it will still benefit your facility immediately and long into the future.
Regulations should not be necessary
The bottom line is that when you are operating your facility properly, the regulations that are put in place should have very little real impact. This is because you should be constantly focusing on how you will improve the safety, efficiency and overall performance of your facility.
When you do this, the regulations that are put in place will be little more than an afterthought because you will already be in compliance and well beyond.
- What is HAZCOM? (Hazard Communication Definition + OSHA Standards)– creativesafetysupply.com
- OSHA Safety Floor Tape– aislemarking.com
- OSHA’s Standards for Floor Marking– floor-tape.com
- Is your business compliant with Proposition 65?– blog.creativesafetysupply.com
- OSHA and Continuous Improvement– blog.5stoday.com
- Creating an OSHA-Compliant Sign System– realsafety.org
- Creating A GHS Compliant Label– industriallabelprinters.net
- OSHA Floor Marking Standards– floor-marking-tape.com
- Pipe Marking Basics– warehousepipemarking.com