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Always remember motor vehicles when thinking of workplace safety

When we think of workplace safety, we may think of specific, situations that require the use of the proper safety equipment for specialized conditions, such as fall protection for roofing workers or breathing apparatus for workers who have to enter confined spaces. This equipment and the proper training to use it, is essential for a large number of workers.

However, a mistake that can occur when considering workplace safety is to think that it is only situations that demand specialized safety equipment are implied. While specialized equipment is necessary in those particular instances, other more mundane circumstances can be just as dangerous, and because of their greater exposure, may cause a greater number of workplace accidents and injuries. 

The operation of a motor vehicle in the U.S. is so ubiquitous that many people would hardly give them a second thought. And that is part of the problem. Their ubiquity can allow us to overlook the risks that accompany their use, because it is so common as to be unremarkable.

The Texas Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) is holding a safety workshop in August here in El Paso, to help employers and workers do their jobs more safely.

One topic for the workshop is driver safety. The DWC notes that "incidents" involving motorized land vehicles in 2012 had almost doubled from the previous year, increasing from 106 to 191.

While driver safety is of heightened importance to a trucking firm, any business that has employees driving vehicles is at risk for motor vehicle accidents and a clear safety and training should be in place. In many job, the most dangerous work activity may be driving a motor vehicle. 

Source: Workerscompenstation.com, "TX Regional Workplace Safety Summit Offered August 20 in El Paso," July 20, 2014

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