A Written Workplace Safety Program (WWSP) is a management approach for identifying, analyzing, and controlling workplace safety and health issues. This includes developing systematic policies, and practices in creating and maintaining a safe and healthy working environment. The implementation of a WWSP is a proven and effective method for reducing the number of accidents and injuries among your employees.

Controlling injuries can save your company money in employer’s compensation costs, decrease employee time away from work, and help improve employee productivity and morale.

1. Where and How to Start

First, you will need to develop a safety policy statement. Your safety policy statement must contain short and concise statements each employee can recite. It must explain the goals and objectives of your safety and health program, reinforce the principle that safety is everyone’s responsibility and be signed by the most senior officer in the organization.

2. Commitments of the Management

Commitment’s of the management in writing the written workplace safety program include, management involvement, communicating responsibility, and resources to responsible parties and holding those parties responsible. In addition, management needs to make sure that employers are encouraged to report hazards, injuries, illness and symptoms and that there aren’t any programs or policies discouraging this report.

3. Division of Responsibilities

Your WWSP must explain how the responsibilities for safety and health have been assigned to managers, supervisors, employees, and any other entities (such as safety committees) in International Lawyer Network your organization. Clear assignments of responsibility will allow each employee, supervisor, and manager to know what activities and behaviors are expected. What employees, supervisors and managers are held accountable for is what normally gets accomplished in your operation. Be as specific as you can and then hold them to it. Use this as part of your performance appraisal process to evaluate employee effectiveness. Assess your current business activities, positions, and responsibilities. Make a list of all employees, showing date of hire, job description, and what experience and training each might have.

4. Hazard Identification

Your WWSP must explain how you intend to identify, analyze, and control existing, new or potential hazards at your organization. This should include: regular inspections of your facilities, and analysis of hazard operations, carrying out workplace accident investigations, injury trend analysis, and taking action to eliminate future injuries. Be more specific and delegate who will be completing each activity, when they are to complete the activity, and how this will be evaluated for effectiveness.

5. Hazard Analysis

Analyzing your hazards is an important step in reducing the potential for accidents, as it will help you use your resources more effectively when you begin to correct them. Once your hazards and potential hazards have been identified, you will need to list the methods you intend to use to analyze them. Each of these components should be evaluated independently. Once this has been done, you can combine the two components to determine the gravity of each hazard.

6. Hazard Control

Now that the hazards have been identified and categorized, it is time to avoid them. If possible, eliminate the hazard(s) completely. If not, you must control the hazard(s) by using one or more of the following: Engineering Controls: Barricades, and ventilation systems. Administrative Controls: changing work schedules, or assignments. Generally, to manage hazards the workers will have to be trained in hazard recognition and how to reduce their exposure. Some examples of Administrative and Procedural Controls include Hazard communication programs and Lock-out/tag-out procedures. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as eye protectors, hand protectors, and respirators. Personal Protective Equipment should always be used as a final option. Solutions should be sought in engineering or administrative controls first.