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Spot The Safety Violation: Shine a Light on Safety

What simple change could make this dark and scary hallway safer and less foreboding?

Safety measures don’t have to be complicated or costly. Simple, inexpensive measures can often be very successful in preventing injuries and safety incidents.

Appropriate workplace lighting is a good example. When workplaces are properly illuminated, workers:

  • Can do their jobs efficiently and safely;
  • Are less vulnerable to certain hazards, such as slips, trips and falls; and
  • Are less prone to developing conditions such as headaches and eye strain.

The hallway in this picture is a good example of a part of a workplace that isn’t properly lit. It appears that the bulb in one of the lighting fixtures in the ceiling is burnt out or not working. As a result, a long stretch of the hallway is quite dark and, as a result, unsafe.

Take 5 Lighting Compliance Steps

To ensure that your workplace is properly lit and complies with the lighting requirements in the OHS regulations in your jurisdiction, take these five steps:

  1. Measure the lighting levels throughout your workplace.
  2. Make sure that there’s sufficient lighting for workers to do their jobs safely and to comply with any specific lighting level requirements. (Use this checklist.)
  3. Use a variety of types of lighting to ensure proper illumination levels.
  4. Ensure that the workplace is equipped with emergency lighting if the failure of the regular lighting could endanger workers.
  5. implement procedures to ensure that lighting fixtures are properly cleaned and maintained and bulbs replaced when necessary.

Proper Housekeeping Prevents Slips, Trips & Falls

To make matters worse in the hallway in the picture, it looks like there’s a puddle in that dark stretch. A worker walking down this dark hall may not see the puddle and so could easily slip in it, fall and get hurt. That’s why puddles, spills and the like should be cleaned up immediately.

To protect your workers from slip and fall hazards such as this puddle:

  • Tailor this slips, trips and falls inspection checklist for your workplace and use it when inspecting your workplace to identify hazards that could cause workers to slip, trip or fall; and document actions needed to address the identified hazards.
  • Implement housekeeping practices to ensure that floors are cleaned regularly to remove water, oil and other substances that can make them slippery.