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Deadly accident renews focus on employee safety

By taking the time to speak about the importance of safety, manufacturers can be sure that every employee is aware of the rules and knows their value.

News of a deadly accident at a fertilizer plant near Waco, Texas, is serving as a reminder that workplace safety policies need to be routinely reviewed and updated. Hundreds of factory workers were injured the explosion, and businesses across the country are taking steps to prevent further accidents by addressing safety issues within their own facilities.

Employee incentive programs can be used to promote a safe working environment. These initiatives can stress the importance of always following safety regulations by rewarding staff members for following protocols. By taking the time to speak about the importance of safety, manufacturers can be sure that every employee is aware of the rules and knows their value. This creates a safety-first culture that reduces employee injuries and boosts productivity.

Focusing on worker safety has other benefits as well. A study by the National Safety Council recently found a correlation between efforts to reduce workplace accidents and increased positive customer experiences. When employees felt empowered to make improvements in their work environment, they also took steps necessary to deliver better services to customers. The study examined more than 800 employees at a Midwestern utility company who were responsible for customer-related functions including installation and service of lines, billing, meter readings and emergency services. It found the groups that saw more injuries also had fewer satisfied customers. The study shows that employees who feel safe are more engaged and productive than those in risky environments.

The accident in Texas shows the importance of reviewing procedures regularly. This increases the chances of detecting faulty equipment before it breaks down and creates potentially dangerous situations. Employee reward programs could be used to motivate workers to find ways of improving safety measures. Recognizing staff members who have been influential in the development of new protocols or who identify potential hazards stresses the value of keeping an eye out for dangerous situations.

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