Canadian Manufacturing

Employees need to understand the most essential manufacturing safety topics

by Emily Newton, Editor-in-Chief, Revolutionized   

Human Resources Manufacturing Operations Research & Development Economy labour Manufacturing regulations Research Safety

Ignoring or avoiding these topics and the related manufacturing safety training can lead to extremely costly lessons.

Ignoring or avoiding these topics and the related manufacturing safety training can lead to extremely costly lessons, a hard truth we must abide by. (Adobe Stock)

Did you know that worksite accidents leading to injury or death are fairly common? A Bureau of Labor Statistics survey on occupational injuries and illnesses revealed that the manufacturing industry accounts for 15% of all private sector nonfatal injuries. These statistics highlight how important it is to discuss and understand manufacturing safety topics, or more specifically, how vital it is to undergo appropriate training.

Without question, employees need to understand the most essential safety topics, if only to remain aware of their own well-being. However, administering the proper manufacturing safety training can also encourage workers to be more aware of others, holding them accountable whenever applicable. In translation, it’s a lot safer for everyone.

Essential Manufacturing Safety Topics

Slips and Falls

Worksite falls are the leading cause of death in the construction industry, but they’re also responsible for many injuries in the rest of the professional world, including manufacturing. They could be attributed to equipment on a job site, such as ladders, spills, poor ground footing and obstacles. Slips and falls also happen in plants due to poor organization or maintenance, particularly cleanups.

It’s crucial to understand that they are extremely common, and it’s also necessary to point out all relevant possibilities for how and why falls can happen. Everyone should take ownership over keeping the workplace safe, not just their areas. This means cleaning the floor of spills, debris and loose obstacles as soon as possible. Hazard or warning signs should also be used liberally in dangerous areas.



Your posture can affect your health and safety, whether standing, sitting, or lifting and moving objects. This is sometimes overlooked when reviewing manufacturing safety training guidelines, but it’s quite important.

Sitting for extended periods has been known to cause severe health issues, but the same is true of poor posture overall. Personal protective aids should be used when lifting heavy objects, like braces, straps and whatever else lightens the load. Proper lifting techniques should also be taught and leveraged on the job site. If sitting is a concern, there should be ample time for breaks and for people to get up and stretch.

Poor posture in any situation is slow-acting and causes the most damage over time. Being mindful and taking the right actions and precautions can significantly improve the endgame.

Facility and Equipment Maintenance

The condition and maintenance of facilities and equipment are just as important to manufacturing safety training. A machine that hasn’t been serviced or properly cared for can either fail disastrously or create potential hazards, and so can a facility that is not properly vetted or maintained.

Things like wet floors or spills, damaged walkways, misplaced tools, debris, messes, poor lighting, slippery flooring and seriously out-of-date equipment can be contributing factors. It’s not just something the maintenance and service teams should be concerned about, either. Sometimes, other employees should clean up spills if they are the first to discover them. There should be guidelines and processes to ensure the entire facility is covered from top to bottom.

Additional Manufacturing Safety Training Concerns

A few other manufacturing safety topics should be on everyone’s radar:

  • Fire hazards
  • Electrical safety
  • Hazardous materials
  • Lockout or tagout procedures
  • Machine guarding
  • PPE quality

Ignoring or avoiding these topics and the related manufacturing safety training can lead to extremely costly lessons.


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