Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Proof is in the Pudding

Processes to protect Customers and Employees

With all of the recent OSHA activity keep in mind that not all safety regulations are mandated.  Up until now, OSHA has not established a standard for employee fatigue. However, injuries associated with this condition are beginning to mount.  Due to weather conditions, car washers often have small windows to wash a volume of cars; this can lead to excessive hours and, of course, employee fatigue.  If your company does not have a policy to address this situation, consider putting one in place before someone is hurt or it is mandated by OSHA. 

A clerical employee was severely injured in a lube shop that had been converted into a detail bay.  In this case the bay still had the opening for working under the cars which created a tripping hazard.  Lesson learned: when operations are modified, be sure that the conditions of the facility are conducive for the new operations being preformed. This is also an example of an injury that was sustained as the result of an employee being in an unauthorized area.

Another serious incident occurred when a customer exited their car in a lube bay and fell into the pit. There was a policy in effect requiring all customers to remain in their vehicle, however, the customer chose to ignore this.  To prevent these occurrences an accountable employee should be assigned the task of enforcing all rules.

Bottom line, great processes are meaningless unless they are put into action and then enforced.