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Toolbox Talk - Listening to health and safety

Seeing is certainly believing but don't under-estimate how important it is to listen...

Listening to Safety

Seeing is certainly believing but don't under-estimate how important it is to listen...

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We often talk about safety as being visual- look for hazards, changes to the work area, what the other contractors are doing. To do this we use our eyes.

Hearing is an essential way to track and understand what is happening around you. Our hearing is extremely well attuned to our surroundings, it’s the brains first response system. It tells us when to pay attention and shapes our understanding of what is happening.

Construction sites are filled with noise, however any changes to the normal sounds on site are picked up instantly. Someone using a blunt skilsaw, a knocking sound coming from a motor, the sound of a drill biting into material, a tool being dropped, someone shouting a warning. All these things make us alert and looking around for the source of the problem.

You hear anywhere from 20-100 times faster than you see! Hence another good reason to protect your hearing!

 

What decreases our ability to hear safely?

·         Over concentration on your work.

·         Lack of sleep.

·         Bad overeating habits.

·         Use of alcohol and/or drugs.

·         Poor work ventilation.

·         Loud radios: individual radio with ear plugs.

Can we improve listening to safety?

·         Become acquainted with the proper operating sounds of machinery around you.

·         Listen closely to instructions, ask if they are unclear.

·         Try picking out the different noises around you.

 

Remember your eyes can only see what is in front of you whereas our ears are capable of hearing in all directions.