• Require employees to take a Mental Safety Assessment moments or seconds before starting a task.
    Require employees to take a Mental Safety Assessment moments or seconds before starting a task.
Conduct a Job Safety Analysis (JSA). Use this methodology to identify, analyze, and record:

  • Individual steps involved in performing a specific job;
  • Existing or potential safety and health hazards associated with each step;
  • Recommended actions/procedures that will eliminate or reduce these hazards and the risk of a workplace injury or illness.

Performing a JSA on first-time jobs or nonroutine tasks proactively identifies risks and ensures safeguards against those risks are established, communicated, and implemented toward reducing workplace injuries and illnesses. A post-injury investigation (root cause analysis) often reveals a hazard or hazards that could have been designed out or protected against had the proactive JSA process taken place before starting work. Veolia Water has effectively used JSA Builder (www.jsabuilder.com) as an online, cost-effective resource for creating, documenting, and managing JSAs. A standardized form like the one in OSHA’s Job Hazard Analysis (publication 3701) will also suffice (www.osha.gov/Publications/osha3071.pdf).

Require employees to conduct a Mental Safety Assessment moments or seconds before starting a task.

Has something changed since the original JSA was prepared? It may be a simple activity that didn’t require a JSA (e.g., crossing a street). Taking the time to “think it out” and perform the job right the first time is especially effective in preventing injury.

Conduct peer-to-peer or supervisor-to-subordinate job observations. This is a “live” assessment of how an employee performs a task to identify behaviors that could lead to injury. The method is highly effective because the employee can immediately correct potentially harmful actions.

This process also confirms that JSA and MSA programs are in place and embraced.

Dan Ryan is the executive vice president, management systems and health and safety, for Veolia Water North America in Vandalia, Ohio. E-mail dan.ryan@veoliawaterna.com; visit www.veoliawaterna.com.

Additional resource: “Choosing Foods and Beverages for Healthy Meetings, Conferences, and Events” from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Visit go.hw.net/safefood.