The Government of Delhi has unveiled a comprehensive Safety Manual on Occupational Safety and Health. This manual underscores the critical importance of occupational safety and health in preventing workplace injuries and illnesses, as well as its role in promoting employee health and safeguarding organizations from financial and reputational losses.
Occupational Safety and Health plays a pivotal role in ensuring that individuals are not exposed to job-related hazards that could jeopardize their health and safety. Every year, a substantial number of workers worldwide suffer injuries or lose their lives due to work-related health risks. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of workdays are lost globally because of work-related accidents and physical ailments, imposing significant economic burdens on industries and companies.
The cascading effects of these incidents include financial losses, damage to goodwill, legal complications, compensation payouts, and unfulfilled salary and wage commitments. This, in turn, can have far-reaching implications for any organization.
The newly released Safety Manual emphasizes that an effective Occupational Safety and Health Programme not only benefits the organization but also ensures the well-being of its employees. It calls for heightened awareness among employers, employees, and the general public regarding occupational safety and health issues. Such awareness is crucial not only for safety reasons but also for economic, legal, and ethical considerations.
Occupational Safety and Health focuses on understanding how workplaces impact their surroundings and the health hazards they may pose to employees and the local community. It is about preventing hazards and implementing necessary measures to mitigate risks effectively.
The Safety Manual outlines key points to ensure occupational safety and health in the workplace:
- Encouraging individual responsibility for safety for oneself and others.
- Emphasizing that all accidents are preventable.
- Promoting adherence to all policies, procedures, and statutory requirements.
- Stressing the importance of risk assessment, work stoppage, and thoughtful consideration.
- Urging vigilance in identifying safety issues and potential hazards in advance.
- Highlighting the importance of appropriate training and awareness before performing tasks.
- Advocating the use of suitable equipment for lifting and transporting heavy objects.
- Insisting on proper supervision to maintain a safe work environment.
Additionally, the manual provides guidance on ensuring workplace safety through actions such as:
- Placing danger signs where applicable.
- Conducting thorough risk assessments.
- Prioritizing safety measures.
- Eliminating or reducing dangers.
- Planning and implementing safe work procedures.
- Maintaining ongoing supervision and evaluation.
- Encouraging a proactive approach to safety.