Written safe work procedures provide your workers with instructions on how to carry out specific tasks and how to protect themselves against known hazards. Following safe work procedures helps your workers to minimize risks. Written safe work procedures that are specific to your operation will also help you with worker orientation and training.
Make sure your safe work procedures are developed, reviewed and maintained by qualified people (e.g., supervisors). These qualified people should develop the written procedures together with workers who understand and actually perform the tasks.
Ensure you have written safe work procedures for all areas of your workplace. Procedures for high-risk activities must be posted and readily accessible.
Post your safe work procedures in appropriate areas around the workplace. For example, safe work procedures for a piece of equipment should be posted next to that equipment.
Sample safe work procedure: Dealing with a fire
- Locate the fire.
- If the fire is small and localized, treat it with a fire extinguisher. If the fire is large, don’t risk your safety. Don’t attempt to fight it with a fire extinguisher.
- Use the paging system to advise staff and guests that there is an emergency situation and they must take their personal possessions and leave the building immediately. Take the schedules with you as you exit. Advise everyone to walk (don’t run) to exits. Staff must not go to lockers to get personal belongings.
- Phone 911 from a phone outside the building. Be prepared to give the following information:
- Your name
- Address of fire, including the nearest intersecting street
- Information about the fire (e.g., how fast the fire is spreading; people trapped)
- Ensure that people are leaving the building. Do not allow anyone to go back into the building. Ensure that all workers are accounted for, checking against the schedules.
- Have staff members meet at a pre-arranged area away from the building (for example, a nearby pay phone).
- Senior manager on duty should:
- Ensure everyone leaves the building.
- Provide firefighters with details of the fire.
- Stay near the building.
- Cooperate with firefighters.
- Contact senior management at home office.
- Do not re-enter the building for any reason until advised by firefighters that it is safe.
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