Importance of solid workplace safety practices

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Karen Nelson
  • 99th Security Forces Squadron
Many may see safety as a waste of time when it comes to the workplace. Some may believe that as long as you're not bleeding, there are no safety violations or concerns, so no need for paperwork. 

However, safety encompasses small and large issues. Some of the smaller issues include blown out light bulbs, floor dips, and non-illuminated exit signs. A few of the larger issues include electrical issues, broken bones, chemical misuse, and even death. 

In this article, I will explain why safety is, or should be, the top priority for every individual, workplace, and ultimately, the overall mission.

Following all posted safety tips is a great way to ensure each individual in the workplace maintains the ability to complete their duties. These individual practices include proper posture, sanitary practices, and correct usage of all equipment. 

Failing to adhere to these practices can not only hinder individual performance, but it can also disrupt the work flow in the entire office. 

Members of the armed forces are considered the greatest resource. Without each individual, the mission could not be completed. 

Individual safety also occurs during off-duty time. When participating in high-risk sporting activities, every individual must ensure they are utilizing personal protective equipment, such as mouth guards, helmets, elbow and knee pads, etc.

The workplace is any location where a person is performing job-related tasks while on duty. Safety in the workplace hinges on ensuring the structure is kept safe for all of the individuals that work within its walls. 

Ensuring the required equipment is readily available and any molds or mildews are treated and removed makes the workplace more conducive to positive productivity. Failure to maintain a clean environment and decrease excessive use of chemicals can make the workplace environment difficult to work in. 

Having safety conscious individuals will have little to no affect if the work environment is not maintained with the same safety beliefs. 

Finally, failure to follow safety regulations can ultimately hinder the overall mission. Though a mission can be destroyed by a lack of communication, it can also be deemed a failure if the participating individuals lack a safety mindset. 

After all, what is a mission without the people to bring it to fruition? Every mission should be executed in the safest way possible. Safety equals success.

In conclusion, safety should be the main priority for any activity on- or off-duty. It is not something to talk about but not enforce. Failing to remain safety conscious as individuals or in a workplace can ultimately destroy the mission. 

Always ensure you are following safety practices from the safety boards located in your workplaces. If you have a question or concern, contact your unit safety representative or the safety office. Remember, mission first, safety always.