Critical Safety Behaviors


Unsafe behaviors or decisions are usually contributing factors in incidents. Sometimes an unsafe behavior increases the severity of injuries; other times, it is simply a key determinant in causing the incident.

While employers also have a large responsibility to control hazards for their employees, the role employees play is vital. If you understand the hazards of your job and the safe behaviors required of you, and you do your part to help, many incidents can be avoided.

Examples of Behaviors That Must Be Avoided at All Times

  • Displacing or bypassing safeguards
  • Bypassing a lockout process
  • Bypassing any established safety procedure or device
  • Walking under suspended loads
  • Using an ungrounded portable electric hand tool
  • Reaching into hazardous areas of machinery
  • Manually lifting loads that are too heavy or awkward
  • Overloading a scaffold or forklift
  • Taking a shortcut by climbing over a moving conveyer belt
  • Chipping or grinding without safety glasses or goggles and a face shield
  • Cleaning parts with flammable or toxic solvents, especially in poorly-ventilated areas

A successful safety program includes you being aware of the hazards of tasks, knowing the critical behaviors, and following them.

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