Why a Checklist of Activities to Be Observed Is Needed
A checklist or form should be used for recording observations. This form should record what the worker has been observed doing, when the observation was made, and what action or actions were taken or planned as a result. The checklist should include key points of the particular job. If a JSA/JHA is available, it should be used as the basic information and guideline for the observation. The supervisor should watch each step of the job and be alert for compliance with safe job procedures. The supervisor should recognize the need to revise the JSA/JHA if necessary.
A list of possible unsafe actions for the job would provide a guide to use. The supervisor must keep an open mind for possibilities that are not on the list. Most checklists do not cover every conceivable unsafe action. A checklist should also include specific safety behaviors to look for, such as the following:
- • How does the worker handle tools and equipment?
- • Does the worker show concern for doing a good job?
A checklist can also detect hazards caused by inappropriate clothing and inadequate personal protective equipment. Whether clothing should be considered hazardous may depend on the type of work done, the work area, the weather, or company regulations. A checklist may detect hazards such as the following:
- 1. Loose or ragged clothing that could be caught in moving machinery
- 2. Rings, bracelets, necklaces, or wristwatches that could be hazardous when climbing, using certain tools, working around heat or chemicals, or doing electrical work
- 3. Long hair that could catch in or on moving or rotating machinery or that could become harmful in other ways
Personal protective equipment can also be checked during observations. Items can include the following:
- • Proper head protection, eye protection, and foot protection
- • When needed, proper gloves, respirators, and suitable ear protection
- • The use of protective clothing
- • Respirators and other items required for specific areas
Any specific unsafe behavior on the job will correspond to basic types of unsafe procedures. The following unsafe procedures should be included in an observation checklist:
- 1. Operating or using equipment without authority
- 2. Failure to secure against unexpected movement
- 3. Failure to utilize lockout/tagout or blocking
- 4. Operating or working at an unsafe speed
- 5. Using unsafe tools and equipment
- 6. Using tools and equipment unsafely
- 7. Failure to warn or signal as required
- 8. Assuming an unsafe position or unsafe posture
- 9. Removing or making safety devices inoperable
- 10. Repairing, servicing, or riding equipment in a hazardous manner
- 11. Failure to wear required personal protective equipment
- 12. Wearing unsafe personal attire
- 13. Violation of known safety rules and safe job procedures
- 14. Indulging in practical jokes, fighting, or sleeping; creating distractions; etc.