Staying safe while working at a recycling facility (MRF) can be a challenge all on its own. Not only are there heavy equipment hazards to be aware of, but there are also fall hazards to be aware of and the safeguarding of machines. Here are three tips to help keep everyone in MRFs safe.
1. Commit To a Safety Program
MRFs should have a well-executed safety program and perform safety inspections regularly. Statistically speaking, companies that employ safety programs are more likely to prevent serious injuries or effectively handle emergencies. Not only that but safety committees that meet regularly help reinforce the standards to new hires, setting a good example from the start. If you don’t have a safety program currently at your MRF, talk to your supervisor about setting one up. It’s likely that they will be interesting in MRF safety training as well.
2. Maintain Awareness of Surroundings
Although you may always obey traffic rules and flow patterns, not everyone may be as careful at your facility. While it’s important to be aware of safety signs in your MRF, it’s just as important to be cognizant of your surroundings as well. If you must get out of your vehicle for some reason, stay close and exercise caution while checking for other vehicles in the area. Before stepping into a new area, scan your surroundings and take note of any safety hazards that may be out of your direct line of sight. Keep in mind that if you can’t see around a corner, anyone also coming around that corner can’t see you.
3. Wear Appropriate Gear and Clothing
Always wear gear and clothing that is visible. Many MRFs will require high visibility clothing, safety shoes, hard hats, and safety glasses. Wear bright or reflective clothing that will allow you to be seen easily. Aside from that, check with your MRF manager to see if there are personal protective equipment requirements that you should be aware of. Not wearing the correct gear can easily be a mistake that might cost your limb or your life.
While staying safe at an MRF may be challenging, there are things that can be done to improve injuries or mishaps. Wearing reflective or bright clothing can go a long way towards making sure people see you. Being aware of your surroundings – especially areas that are out of sight – can greatly increase your odds of dodging an injury. If your team doesn’t already have a safety program in place, make sure to speak to your manager about setting one up.