OSHA, or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, requires that businesses maintain certain safety standards for production and other industry workplaces. In the event of an emergency businesses should have detailed action plans that are easy to access and follow by everyone in the department. Employees need to be trained in the proper procedures as well. Emergencies can include events such as fires, evacuations, natural disasters, or medical emergencies.
OSHA Guidelines to Help You Design the Right Emergency Action Plan for Your Facility.
- Communications, both written and verbal.
OSHA requires companies to have an emergency action plan in writing. Everyone in the facility needs to be able to access the plan quickly and easily during an emergency. Keep the plan in the same location as the employee handbook and other important Human Resources documents. If your company has fewer than 10 employees the safety action plan can be communicated verbally.
- Minimum requirements.
The following items are required by OSHA to be on all emergency action plans:
- Fire safety and reporting procedures
- Evacuation plans including routes
- How to account for all employees after evacuations
- Critical employees who stay behind in an emergency
- Procedures during rescue and medical emergencies
- Emergency contact information for employees
- Alarm systems in place.
The presence and maintenance of the proper alarm system is also required by OSHA. There must be distinct and different sounds for all of the types of emergencies. These include lock down, evacuation, and fires. The alarm system must comply with OSHA’s standards and be accessible to employees who are properly trained. On-site drills are also encouraged.
- Employee training.
Trained employees are not only useful during emergencies but may also be the difference between emergency and catastrophe. They should be trained to assist in a safe and orderly fashion when an emergency arises. The employer also needs to review safety plans with all employees when they are hired or any time a change is made. Employers are also required to train temporary employees on emergency plans.
Want to Know More About OSHA’s Emergency Action Regulations?
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