Safety at Work
Now I don't mean to disparage safety, but these meetings cover things like spill control, lock out-tag out, safety glasses etc. and all of these are important, but I have never heard them discuss the most dangerous things I see at work.
I have yet to see a MIOSHA (Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration) film on the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse in the work place. I have seen tens of thousands of dollars in damage done and people seriously hurt because of an intoxicated co-worker. A drunk or high person is always a danger to themselves but when they are fork-lift drivers or equipment operators or maintainance workers the danger is even greater. Every year the AFL-CIO puts out a list of employees who have been killed on the job and I can't help but wonder how many of them are due to either being intoxicated themselves or an intoxicated co-worker. I believe that the greatest single danger faced by many workers is drunk and intoxicated co-workers. Because of lawsuits etc. it is very difficult to effectively deal with this particular problem.
Another major cause of injuries that I have seen that doesn't get the discussion is improper or poorly maintained equipment. One of the most common sources of injuries with my previous employer was workers using razor blades without putting them in the proper handle, just using them bare handed. I have seen a lot of stitches given because of that. My father lost a couple fingers when he was 30 because a stamping press wasn't operating properly.
I have yet to see a film on improper training, plain stupidity, or inattentiveness (guilty as charged). I have seen a guy who was working near an oven who got tired of sweating so much so he quit taking in water; they found him lying on the floor from heat stroke. I have seen guys jump on pallets to break them up only to get a nail driven into their foot. I hate to admit this but I once got brained by an item hanging from the paint line because I was looking the other way and wound up in the Doctor's Office (Nearly 20 years on the factory floor and that was my only injury and it wasn't that serious. It was however, my own fault.) I have seen people overcome by fumes because the respirator was uncomfortable.
And don't even get me started on poorly trained or inattentive fork truck drivers. I have seen them break water lines, gas lines, accidentally run into fire alarms, drive them off the end of loading docks, knock people over, and more.
Employees face real dangers but MIOSHA safety films seem to concentrate only on a few areas. The problems they do deal with don't seem to be the ones that I have repeatedly seen with my own eyes.