For industrial companies and distributors of petrochemical products, safety is more than a handbook: it’s a culture. Regardless whether if the field is located in the heart of Singapore, Malaysia, or in the remote areas of Brunei, it is critical that all workers have easy access or are provided with their own to safety equipment in order to reduce the rate of the incident as they do their work.
However, providing workers and equipping the workplace with safety rudiments such as PPE, gas detection system, fall protection system, and firefighting equipment is not enough to ensure the well-being of workforce, and that the facility will remain secure when the worst happens. More importantly, it is paramount that all are knowledgeable enough to handle the safety equipment properly and are well-trained to use such equipment during emergency situations.
Read on as we detail in this post the safety tips you should implement to handle your safety equipment in the field effectively.
Handling Personal Protective Equipment
OSHA Standards recommends that eye and face protection to be often cleaned, as they do not permit defective, damaged, or contaminated PPE to be used. Contaminated PPE must be cleaned and disinfected before it is dispatched. Safety managers are also obliged to train workers about the proper care, maintenance, and useful life of PPE.
Every PPE must be stored correctly to protect it from hazardous chemical, sunlight, extreme temperatures, and excessive humidity. Regular inspection of the PPE is also recommended to ensure that those that have damaged or have already passed its useful life are disposed of properly.
Ensuring that all workers are adequately trained in the proper maintenance and use of PPE, including an appreciation of its value, also guarantees that everyone understands that PPE is their first line of defence against the hazardous conditions in the field.
Handling Gas Detection Systems
Do not ever use solvent based or hydrocarbon-based materials when cleaning any components of the gas detection equipment as these can contaminate the sensors which can lead to erroneous readings.
ProgressiveMy recommends a minimum of 6 monthly service intervals to ensure the accuracy of the sensors in the detection instruments. Ideally, the gas to be detected should be used to calibrate the detection system and must be supplied by a gas company backed with a certificate of analysis.
It is very important that everyone knows when and how to bump test their unit, e.g. portable gas detector and ANTX controller. Bump testing gas detectors will not only improve the response time and accuracy of the instruments but will ensure that the unit is compliant for regular use as well.
Auxiliary gas detection equipment needs to be checked for damages, blockages and bends in the sample probe as these can affect the sample and give an inaccurate reading. Check the casing, and the battery for cracks as contamination could also affect the readings of the equipment.
Handling Fall Protection Equipment
Fall protection must be cleaned regularly to ensure that no substance on the harness and lanyard could degrade the materials. Doing so also ensures that all parts of the equipment are inspected thoroughly on a regular basis.
Also, avoid using soaking the harness in liquid substance to avoid potential damage to fibres. Using bleach, chlorine, or abrasives can also cause damage. It is recommended only to use a damp sponge to wipe away any residue on the straps and buckles, then hang it to dry to avoid creases and other structural problems.
Fall protection equipment should hang, so it doesn’t get bent or torn by other objects in the storage area. The storage area must also not be in direct sunlight or exposed to a heat source as the heat and UV rays can degrade the fibre that makes up the harness and lanyard.
All workers, managers, and supervisors in the field should be well aware of the dangers of working at elevated heights, and therefore must be well-trained on how to equip different fall protection equipment such as personal fall arrest and personal fall restraint systems.
Handling Firefighting Equipment
It is recommended that all extinguishers are regularly inspected. This is to make sure that all units are in their proper position and have not been discharged or lost or suffering noticeable damage. The inspection interval should not be less than every 4 months, but preferably monthly.
The alarm must be tested at least every week to ensure that the system is capable of operating under alarm conditions. At least one detector, call point, end of line switch should be tested to gauge the ability of the control and indicating equipment to receive a signal and to sound the alarm and operate any other warning devices.
Regular visual inspection of detectors is critical to ensure that no damage, unusual accumulation of dirt, heavy coats of paint and other conditions will interfere with the correct operation of the detector.
Detectors should be checked for correct operation and sensitivity in compliance with the manufacturer’s standards. Where battery operated detectors are fitted, they must be checked each week, and the batteries should be replaced annually.
Overall, even when the right safety equipment and systems are in place, not knowing how to use and maintain them properly is a risk itself. Employees need to be made aware of the proper handling of safety equipment at the workplace, and its great worthwhile benefits not only to them but also to the overall productivity of the organization.
Contact ProgressiveMy today to learn more about our safety equipment and services.