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What is a Safety Talk?

A safety talk is a hands-on way to remind workers that Safety & Health are important on the job.

Safety talks deal with specific problems on site.They do not replace formal training.

Through safety talks you can tell workers about health and safety requirements for the tools, equipment, materials, and procedures they use every day or for particular jobs.

Each safety talk in this book will take about five minutes to present.

Why give a Safety Talk?

In delivering safety talks, your objective is to help workers RECOGNIZE and CONTROL hazards on the project.

You may be a supervisor, a health and safety representative, the member of a joint health and safety committee, a safety officer, or someone with similar duties.

You give safety talks because you are responsible for advising workers about any existing or possible danger to their health and safety.

Safety talks demonstrate the commitment of employers and workers to health and safety on the job.

What makes a Safety Talk work?

  • Choose a talk suited to site and work conditions. Don’t give a talk on quick-cut saws when none are being used on the job.
  • Deliver the talk where it will be most appropriate. That could be the job office, out on the site, or near the tools and equipment you are talking about.
  • Introduce the subject clearly. Let workers know exactly what you are going to talk about and why it’s important to them.
  • Refer to the Safety Talk for information. But wherever possible use your own words.
  • Connect key points to things your crew is familiar with on the project.
  • Pinpoint hazards. Talk about what may happen. Use information from the Safety Talk to explain how to control or prevent these hazards.
  • Wherever possible, use real tools, equipment, material, and job site situations to demonstrate key points.
  • Ask for questions. Answer to the best of your knowledge. Get more information where necessary.
  • Ask workers to demonstrate what they have learned.
  • Keep a record of each talk delivered. Include date, topic, and names of attendees. Photocopy the Report Form at the back of this manual and use it to keep a record of each session.

Point to Remember

The information you present in a Safety Talk may be the only information workers receive about a particular tool, piece of equipment, type of material, or work procedure on the project.

In choosing and presenting your talk, do everything you can to help workers remember and act on the message you deliver.

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