The issue of industrial safety evolved concurrently with industrial development in the United States. Of central importance was the establishment of protective legislation, most significantly the worker’s compensation laws, enacted at the start of the twentieth century, and the Occupational Safety and Health Act, enacted in 1970. The issue of industrial safety was marked by a shift from compensation to prevention as well as toward an increasing emphasis on addressing the long-term effects of occupational hazards. This emphasis was helped along by insurance companies who, in order to protect themselves from workers’ compensation expenses, found that it made good business sense for them to promote industrial safety programs and research industrial safety issues. Today, industrial safety is widely regarded as one of the most important factors that any business, large or small, must consider in its operations. Worker’s compensation laws vary widely from state to state but have key objectives in common. Employers are required to compensate employees for work-related injuries or sickness by paying medical expenses, disability benefits, and compensation for lost work time. In return, workers are barred in many instances from suing their employers, a provision that protects employers from large liability settlements (of course, employers may still be found liable in instances where they are found guilty of neglect or other legal violations). In his Industrial Safety: Management and Technology, David Colling contended that “workmen’s compensation laws have done more to promote safety than all other measures collectively, because employers found it more cost-effective to concentrate on safety than to compensate employees for injury or loss of life.”
Industrial safety is primarily a management activity which is concerned with reducing, controlling and eliminating hazards from the industries or industrial units.
IMPORTANCE OF INDUSTRIAL SAFETY:
The danger of life of human being is increasing with advancement of scientific development in different fields. The importance of industrial safety was realized because every millions of industrial accidents occur which result in either death or in temporary disablement or permanent disablement of employees and involve large amount of losses resulting from danger to property, wasted man hours and wasted hours. More ever, from managerial perspective the importance of industrial safety in any organization may be concluded by following facilitation Treatment. industrial safety management provides;
1. Treatment for injuries and illness at the work place.
2. Medical Examination: it carries out medical examination of staff joining the organization or returning to work after sickness or accident.
3. Hazards identification.
4. Provision of protective devices.
5. Consultancy: it provides medical advised on other condition potentially affecting
e.g. works canteen etc. Education: it provides safety and health training.
OBJECTIVES OF INDUSTRIAL SAFETY:
1. To prevent accidents in the plant by reducing the hazard to minimum.
2. To eliminate accident caused by work stoppage and lost production.
3. To achieve lower workmen’s compensation, insurance rates and reduce all other direct and indirect costs of accidents.
4. To prevent loss of life, permanent disability and the loss of income of worker by eliminating causes of accidents.
5. To evaluate employee’s morale by promoting safe work place and good working condition.
6. To educate all members of the organization in continuous state of safety mindedness and to make supervision competent and intensely safety minded.
A safety programmed includes mainly following four E’s.
• Engineering: i.e safety at the design, equipment installation stage.
• Education: i.e. education of employees in safe practices.
• Enlistment: it concerns the attitude of the employees and management towards the programmed and its purpose. Ti is necessary to arouse the interest of employees in accident prevention and safety consciousness.
• Encouragement: i.e. to enforce adherence to safe rules and practices.
Definition: safety organization may be defined as organization taking in the work of accident prevention. It means that it has to remove unsafe physical conditions and substitute safety practices in the place of unsafe practices.
The Creation of Osha
One of the key developments in industrial safety legislation was the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. The Act, which was the first comprehensive industrial safety legislation passed at the federal level, passed nearly unanimously through both houses of Congress. One of the factors contributing to strong support for the act was the rise in the number of work-related fatalities in the 1960s, and particularly the Farmington, West Virginia, mine disaster of 1968, in which 78 miners were killed. The Occupational Safety and Health Act was distinguished by its emphasis on the prevention of—rather than compensation for—industrial accidents and illnesses. The legislation provided for the establishment of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Among the key provisions of the act were the development of mandatory safety and health standards, the enforcement of these standards, and standardized record-keeping and reporting procedures for businesses.
OSHA issues regulations governing a wide range of worker safety areas, all intended to meet OSHA’s overriding principle that “each employer shall furnish to each of his employees employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his [or her] employees.” OSHA regulations include both safety standards, designed to prevent accidents, and health standards, designed to protect against exposure to toxins and to address the more long-term effects of occupational hazards. So-called “horizontal” standards apply to all industries whereas “vertical” standards apply to specific industries or occupations. Some of OSHA’s standards were adopted from private national organizations, such as the American National Standards Institute, the National Fire Protection Association, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Other standards are developed by OSHA itself, often based on recommendations from NIOSH.
The basic elements regarding the safety organization are as under; management leadership assignment of responsibility maintenance of safe working conditions establishment of safety training and accident record system medical and first aid system. Acceptance of personal responsibilities by employees.
Top management attitude to wards accident prevention is reflected in the attitude of the supervisory force. Similarly the workers attitude is dependent on the supervisor. Therefore, the success of a program for prevention of accidents will mainly rest on the interest taken by the top management.
ASSIGNMENT OF RESPONSIBILITY:
It is of a paramount importance that assignment of full responsibility should be given to some one for safety activities. It is usual to entrust this function to general manager, workers manager or personnel manager but if there is fulltime safety officer then this function is entrusted to him and he is usually answerable to atop ranking officer such as Director or General manager.
The supervisor is the key person in any safety program. To the worker, he is the management. It is again the supervisor who has intimated knowledge of the temperament, attitude, sense of responsibility, physical characteristics, skill, training, etc of the workers. In other words he has immediate control over them. Therefore, the supervisor is indispensable that is not be set aside in any safety scheme and workers success would depend upon the interest and participation of the supervisor. To achieve the results, management should adopt the method of policy of associating safety as part of good production methods and to make it known that bad safety record or poor safety procedure by itself will be as a bad performance by management.
PRINCIPLE TO PREVENT ACCIDENTS:
Accident prevention is highly essential in an industry, in order to
prevent injury to and premature death of employees.
Reduce operation and production costs.
Have good employee- employer relations.
High up the morale of employees.
Above all the prevention of accidents is a true humanitarian concern. Accident prevention does not occur by itself; there should be consistent of safety measures and safety programmers emphasizing the need for safe workplace layout and working condition, safe material handling, Personal protective devices, Safety activities in organization.
There are following accident preventions:
In the industrially developed countries, there exist very well defined and highly stringent punitive codes and statutes, which are design to maintain and improve safety health and welfare of employed persons. Even the developing countries have such laws, Albeit still in a some what elementary form which make them anachronistic with the requirements of modern technology and the hazards generated as a consequences thereof. These laws at their best only impose a minimum standard of conduct defining them to be the absolute duty of the employer. Traditionally, the safety specialists have been using this legal argument for accident prevention on the basis that by being conscious about the safety or the employees, the employer can avoid attracting prosecution. The economic argument also becomes relevant at this point because of the fines that has been imposed as the result of statutory breaches, or because of the production loss, which may result due to the closure of the enterprise ordered as a punishment for the breach of these statutes. In the same context, employers feel threatened about the image of the company being tarnished and the effect of the adverse publicity received as a consequence of prosecution and subsequent punishment under the safety laws. This indirectly could also impact adversely in the revenues and hence the profits of the company. In the civilized societies it must be remembered, that one of the prime social objectives of any company is to generate a safe plan of work for its employees.
What is an Accident? (definitions)
An accident may be defined as an unplanned event or happening. This is an accident is something unexpected, not predictable, foreseen or intended. An extension of this theme is that an accident is an outcome of an event that is not desired. Accidents do not just “happen” they are caused. An unsafe act and/or unsafe condition cause the accident event; resulting in interruption to work activities, damage to property or injury to a person. Every accident has one or more identifiable causes. The employer is responsible for ensuring a safe system of work is in place and therefore must take action to prevent accidents from occurring or recurring. For some, this concept still causes difficulty. The term “accident” suggests that an event occurred itself, with some degree of chance and it implies no blame or responsibility. Some people associate or equate an accident.
An industrial accident may be defined as an event, detrimental (harmful) to the health of man, suddenly occurring and originating from external sources, and which is associated with the performance of a paid job, accompanied by an injury, followed by disability or even death. An event that takes place all of a sudden unexpectedly resulting in some thing bad is called an accident. For example a plant catches fire or a person receiving an electric current or any labor cuts his finger in a machine or some bad incidents, which can be called as accidents. Any occurrence that interferes with the orderly progress of activity”
One of the important aspects of industrial safety programs is the identification of hazards. Managers typically determine hazards by the examination of accident records, interviews with engineers and equipment operators, and the advice of safety specialists, such as OSHA or insurance companies. Industrial health hazards are typically categorized into three classes: chemical hazards, in which the body absorbs toxins; ergonomic hazards, such as those resulting from improper lifting or repetitive stress; and physical hazards, in which the worker is exposed to temperature extremes, atmospheric pressure, dangerous conditions, or excessive noise.
About one-tenth of industrial accidents result from operating machinery, and these accidents often result in severe injury. Among the most dangerous types of machinery are power presses and woodworking tools, which most commonly cause injury to the hands. A number of mechanisms have been developed to safeguard against such injuries. The simplest of these are barrier guards, in which the moving parts of machinery are enclosed in a protective housing. These safeguards are typically used in conjunction with sensors so that the machine cannot be operated without them. Other types of safeguards include those which prevent a machine from operating unless a worker has both hands properly in place, automated material feeding devices, warning labels, and color coding.
Toxins are most commonly ingested through inhalation, and the most commonly inhaled substances are dust, fumes, and smoke. Toxins are also commonly absorbed through the skin, and this is a bigger problem than many business owners and managers realize. Indeed, some studies indicate that skin disorders result in approximately 200,000 lost working days each year. The most common of these disorders is dermatitis, which is particularly problematic in the food preparation and chemical industries.
Among the most commonly-used toxins are industrial solvents. The toxicity of solvents varies widely by type, but the most toxic of these are carcinogens and can cause permanent damage to the nervous system through prolonged occupational overexposure. In addition, organic solvents, such as those made from petroleum, are often highly flammable. Tightly-fitted respirators with activated charcoal filters are used to protect against inhalation of organic solvents, particularly in spraying applications in which solvents are atomized. Ventilation systems comprised of fans and ducts are also used to control airborne toxins of all types. Rubber gloves are commonly used to prevent skin absorption of organic solvents.
One of the most rapidly-growing types of reported occupational injury is what the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics refers to as “disorders associated with repeated trauma.” These conditions result from repeatedly performing the same tasks over a prolonged period of time.
In recap of the above paraphrased literature, it is obvious to acknowledge the necessity to observe the importance of safety management in the industries. Thereby ensuring the safety and safe conditions of employer/employees and work environments respectively, while consciously minimizing occupational hazards to the barest minimum level attainable. While observation of the pre-stipulated safety laws, cautions, instructions and warnings are all of immense preventive measures. It is also paramount that all prospective and operative personnel take responsibility of individual action to ensure safety consciousness in all endeavor’s at all time.