1st December, 2022

Health And Safety Advice In Three Words (Or Less!)

Health and safety advice doesn't have to be confusing or complicated. Mostly, health and safety is just common sense. Sure, there are laws and regulations you need to comply with. But ultimately, it's about keeping you safe. Here's some of the shortest health and safety advice you will ever get.

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Do you find health and safety confusing, complicated, and hard to understand? This blog post is for you!

Ok, ok, I'll admit - some health and safety regulations can be a little wordy - there's a reason we have so many acronyms and abbreviations in health and safety. We're always trying to shorten those lengthy phrases down and make them easy to remember - and it's not always easy!

But if you take health and safety back to its core - it's about keeping people safe. Mostly, health and safety is just common sense. Sure, there are laws and regulations you need to comply with, but ultimately, it's about keeping you safe - and healthy.

So we set ourselves a challenge. Instead of lengthy explanations and wordy requirements, provide health and safety advice in just three words (or less!).

Three. Words. Maximum.

And we came up with quite a few! If you think of any more and want us to add yours to the list, let us know.

Check out this list below - it might just be some of the shortest health and safety advice you will ever get!

  1. Safety in everything
  2. Keep spotting hazards
  3. Always assess risks
  4. Learn from mistakes
  5. Ask for help
  6. Accidents are preventable
  7. Unsafe? Report it!
  8. Wear suitable PPE
  9. Use common sense
  10. Keep it simple
  11. Don't cut corners
  12. Focus, focus, focus
  13. Set safety targets
  14. Set realistic goals
  15. Start with inductions
  16. Daily toolbox talks
  17. Check before use
  18. Maintain your equipment
  19. Work safe daily
  20. Mistakes cost lives
  21. Control risks
  22. Near misses escalate
  23. Elimination is best
  24. Always follow instructions
  25. In doubt? Ask!
  26. Don't get complacent
  27. Keep warm
  28. Assess your exposure
  29. Monitor your health
  30. Check your PPE
  31. Plan your work
  32. More than paperwork
  33. Safety is life
  34. Get home safe
  35. You're worth it
  36. Obey the rules
  37. Make safety moments
  38. Avoid unsafe acts
  39. Start safety conversations
  40. Attend safety meetings
  41. Refresh your knowledge
  42. Don't forget health
  43. Keep updating information
  44. Stay aware
  45. You are important
  46. Your health matters
  47. Life over work
  48. Protect your life
  49. Safety always
  50. Keep people safe

Let's take a closer look at what each 3-word phrase means for health and safety.

1. Safety in everything

Health and safety shouldn't be an add-on - it should be part of everything you do and considered with every decision.

2. Keep spotting hazards

Step 1 of your 5 steps to risk assessment - identify hazards. Keep spotting hazards.

3. Always assess risks

A risk assessment isn't something you should file away and forget about. Risk is never zero, so assessing risk should be a continual process.

4. Learn from mistakes

Mistakes happen, but if you learn from them and stop them from happening again, you can prevent harm. Look at near-miss reporting.

5. Ask for help

If you're not sure how to do something or need help to do it safely, ask for help. Teamwork makes the dream work!

6. Accidents are preventable

No accident is unavoidable. But failing to prepare is preparing to fail (it's true!). Make sure you plan your work so you can complete it safely.

7. Unsafe? Report it!

If you see something wrong, even if it's nothing to do with you, report it. You may just save a life.

8. Wear suitable PPE

PPE is your last line of defence should something go wrong. But it can't help you if you're not wearing it!

9. Use common sense

Beneath the rules, regulations and red tape, safety is really about common sense. Don't put yourself in danger.

10. Keep it simple

No one will memorise the entire contents of a 50-page legal document, but they will remember a clear and simple health and safety message.

11. Don't cut corners

Cutting a corner might speed up your work, but it's also the fastest way to have an accident.

12. Focus, focus, focus

It is estimated that around 80% of accidents can be attributed, at least in part to human error. Keep focused.

13. Set safety targets

Don't just focus on negatives, like accident rates. Work towards a positive target, like the number of hazards spotted, controls in place, or safety ideas.

14. Set realistic goals

Realistic and achievable goals are a great incentive and help keep your team motivated for safety.

15. Start with inductions

Always start a new project or site with an induction. Highlight the most important safety rules and arrangements.

16. Daily toolbox talks

Daily - or at least weekly - toolbox talks help refresh knowledge in between longer, more formal training courses.

17. Check before use

Check tools, materials, and equipment for defects and failures to make sure they are safe to use.

18. Maintain your equipment

Equipment might start safe, but it needs to be maintained to stay safe. What good is a guard that no longer closes or a stop switch that doesn't work?

19. Work safe daily

The one day you don't, could be the last day you do.

20. Mistakes cost lives

Mistakes are complex and can happen for several reasons. Make sure you understand the risks and know the rules, and that knowledge is up to date.

21. Control risks

Risks that cannot be eliminated should be controlled to an acceptable level.

22. Near misses escalate

A close shave today could be a fatality tomorrow- near-miss reporting can stop accidents. For every 90 near misses, an accident will occur.

23. Elimination is best

The best way to control risk is to eliminate it entirely. Can you do the work a different (safer) way?

24. Always follow instructions

Instructions are there for a reason, to keep you safe. Follow them!

25. In doubt? Ask!

If in doubt, ask about it. Don't make it up as you go allow, that's how accidents happen.

26. Don't get complacent

Slips and lapses in focus can occur in highly trained procedures where the person does not need to concentrate on what they are doing. They usually happen during a familiar task. That's when mistakes happen.

27. Keep warm

Working in cold environments can slow your reactions and increase the risks of accidents and mistakes. Keep warm and take regular breaks.

28. Assess your exposure

Know what risks you get exposed to - and minimise them.

29. Monitor your health

Some health effects can take years to develop. The damage from asbestos, vibration, noise etc happens over time. Recognise the early warning signs.

30. Check your PPE

There are loads of reasons to wear and use PPE. Make sure you replace PPE when needed, and check that it fits and is compatible with any other equipment you use.

31. Plan your work

Planning ahead means you can look for ways to do the job safely and without health risks.

32. More than paperwork

Paperwork and forms will not save you. Good health and safety practices will.

33. Safety is life

Health and safety is the superhero of management. Fighting hazards to keep you alive and well!

34. Get home safe

If you don't work safely today, you might not get to go home tonight.

35. You're worth it

Your life (and health) is worth the extra time or resources you need to work safely.

36. Obey the rules

Health and safety rules are not there to get broken - neither are you. Broken rules can mean broken bones.

37. Make safety moments

Take a moment to think about safety, and keep safety at the front of your mind.

38. Avoid unsafe acts

Unsafe acts put you and others in danger. They could cost you your job - or your life.

39. Start safety conversations

Start a safety talk to discuss a topic and share knowledge and ideas.

40. Attend safety meetings

Listen, learn, collaborate. Put your thoughts forward, and help improve health and safety in your workplace.

41. Refresh your knowledge

Remember that health and safety course you attended ten years ago? Things have probably changed since then!

42. Don't forget health

Safety hazards are instant and dramatic - the drama queens stealing the spotlight for our attention. So make sure you remember health risks too, they might not be as immediate as safety risks, but they are just as important. Put the health back into health in safety!

43. Keep updating information

Regulations change, and technology advances. Make sure you have the most up-to-date information.

44. Stay aware

Be aware of the hazards and risks around you while you are working.

45. You are important

Health and safety is more than a business requirement, you need it too.

46. Your health matters

Don't forget about your health. To get the most out of life, you need to stay healthy.

47. Life before work

Maintain a healthy work-life balance, and protect yourself so you can perform at your best in all aspects of your life.

48. Protect your life

Protect your life - you only get one.

49. Safety always

Safety shouldn't just come first. It should always be a consideration. Think about health and safety at the start, during, and after.

50. Keep people safe

Because that is what health and safety is all about.

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This article was written by Emma at HASpod. Emma has over 10 years experience in health and safety and BSc (Hons) Construction Management. She is NEBOSH qualified and Tech IOSH.

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