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SafetyWatch: Safety resolutions for 2022

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Work boots and safety gear. (Photo: Kuzma / iStock / Getty Images Plus/ Getty Images)
Photo: Kuzma / iStock / Getty Images Plus/ Getty Images
Work boots and safety gear. (Photo: Kuzma / iStock / Getty Images Plus/ Getty Images)
Photo: Kuzma / iStock / Getty Images Plus/ Getty Images

With the exception of snow events, this time of year is typically slower for green industry companies. In other words, it’s a great time for companies to review their safety policies and resolve to stick with them in 2022, according to Sam Steel, Ed.D., safety adviser for the National Association of Landscape Professionals.

“This is a time of year where senior management can sit down and review old safety policies and look at new job sites coming up and evaluate what other safety items might be required,” Steel says. “That way, when the spring season sets in, they can follow through on their safety program, on training and on providing the proper personal protective equipment (PPE).”

Steel provides a few new year’s resolutions to set landscape companies on the right — and safe — track.

Update the hazard identification listing. Steel recommends doing a survey of the different sites a company may work on to identify potential hazards. From there, he says, those items should be well-communicated to team members in written form.

Be sure to provide proper PPE for employees. Steel notes that if a company has secured new jobs for the year, it’s important to ensure PPE is supplied for those sites.

Make sure to have a good source of training. Whether it’s a weekly safety session, a tailgate training or a lunch box training at the job site, Steel says it’s crucial to plan out and stick to a training schedule for new and seasoned employees. To take it one step further, Steel recommends crew managers provide crew members with a daily briefing once at the site to remind them of proper PPE practices, hazards on the site and other safety procedures.

Stick to it

In order to implement a strong safety culture, everyone at a company from the top to the bottom must buy in, Steel says.
“Management at the top has to be committed to the safety program, and all of that commitment has to flow down to crew members through human resources, through crew management and through those who are delivering and enforcing the safety rules and policies,” Steel says

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