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Safety Month: Focus 4

Addressing the four types of hazards that most frequently result in injury to our employees

Published 06-17-20

Submitted by Tetra Tech

Tetra Tech’s Focus Four Injury Prevention Program (FOCUS 4) is a foundational component of our Health & Safety program. FOCUS 4 addresses the four types of hazards that most frequently result in injury to our employees. For Safety Month, we want to show how we are Safer and Stronger Together by ensuring everyone is aware of these hazards and can take the necessary precautions to avoid them.

Our goals for this program are that each employee is aware of the FOCUS 4 program, understands what it means, recognizes these hazards, and the common controls that can be applied.

The FOCUS 4 hazards are:

  • Struck By

  • Overexertion

  • Environmental Field Hazards

  • Slips and Falls

Preventing FOCUS 4 Injuries

Now that we are aware of the most frequent hazards that impact the health and safety of our employees, we must all support a concerted effort to eliminate or minimize these hazards in our office and projects. Here are just a few prevention steps for FOCUS 4 hazards.

Struck By

  • Plan work to eliminate or minimize struck-by hazards—incorporate into H&S Plans and Job Safety Analysis

  • Participate in the pre-job and daily safety briefings to understand the project site and work zones, especially where heavy equipment will be operating

  • Make sure to wear the proper protective equipment, including hard hats and safety shoes to protect from overhead and falling objects, safety glasses to protect from flying objects, and high visibility vests to ensure equipment operators or motorists can see you

Overexertion

  • Ensure your workstation is set up for proper ergonomics

  • Check your posture—determine proper posture to perform the task and remain vigilant that you maintain it

  • Use proper lifting techniques and mechanical devices (e.g., hand trucks) whenever possible, and do not lift heavy loads

  • Reduce reaching for or pulling objects when you can; slide yourself closer or remove obstacles whenever possible

Environmental Field Hazards

  • Cover as much of the body as possible, wear light-colored clothing, and avoid perfumed soaps, shampoos, and deodorants

  • Conduct frequent assessments for insects, hives, and nests and prevent bites and stings by using safe insect repellent sprays or products

  • Carry an EpiPen or antihistamines if you have a known allergy

  • Recognize the signs and symptoms of heat stress and ensure that you have ample shade and water on all outdoor sites

Slips and Falls

  • Reduce wet or slippery surfaces

  • Avoid creating obstacles in aisles or walkways

  • Maintain good lighting

  • Wear shoes with proper grip

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