When Did You Last Take a Chance on a Safety Short Cut?
Do you ever take a Safety Short Cut?
Do you stop to do a risk assessment at work or home?
I met a fabulous man this past December at a Christmas function. He is positive, has a zest for life, is engaging and conversational, and, not too long ago, his life changed in a moment from an unintended consequence from a safety short cut that he can never undo.
It was an ordinary evening when Mike* decided to hang up a curtain. He was home alone, and it was a quick job, so he just grabbed a chair.
Why get a ladder for a few seconds?
The leg of the chair broke, and Mike hit his head on a shelf behind him. It hurt badly but not enough to stop the curtain from going up.
The step ladder then came out to finish the job, the curtain went up, Mike did the job, and off he went to bed with a bit of a sore head. He didn't think there was anything to cause concern. What could go wrong?
Mike woke up blind the following day. His life would never be the same again.
Was he angry?
Did he believe that this was his fate? No! He went to numerous specialists to find out how he could get his sight back. The answer, sadly, was that the damage was permanent.
It was a quick job.
What could happen?
Your life could change in the blink of an eye, and that safety short cut could leave you blind, disabled, or, at worst, dead.
What risk assessment do you do before you take a short cut?
Hearing Mike’s story has been such a reminder to take the time to do a simple risk assessment for any activity you are going to perform, especially before considering taking a safety short cut. It is as simple as asking these three risk assessment questions before you start.
I am inspired by Mike's enthusiasm for life even after all the loss he has endured. After losing his sight, Mike also lost his freedom, independence, and a job that took him worldwide. Tough times also meant the loss of connection with some friends and family.
Having chatted with Mike, I was also filled with sadness that such a simple error, a safety short cut, could take away so much. Taking the time to stop, assess, and do the job the right way the first time would have had a different outcome.
How do you assess risk at work and home before taking a safety sort cut?
What conversations do you have with your colleagues and family members to understand how they view risk and what tools they use to mitigate risk before they take a safety short cut?
The quality of these conversations could make the difference between a good day or a day you wish had never happened.
Do you need help, personally, in your team, or in your organisation, to have meaningful safety conversations?
Connect with us to have a conversation about how we can help?
(Mike* for privacy this is not his real name)