Control MeasuresControlling a hazard at the source is the best way to protect the employees. Substitution method involves replacing an ingredient/material used in the process or a machine with a less dangerous one. Engineering control involves building a barrier between the employees and the hazard through the enclosure, isolation, and ventilation (ILO, n.d.). Administrative control limits the amount of time an employee spends at a hazardous job by changing work schedules, providing longer rest period or shorter work shifts, or shifting hazardous work process where limited people would be exposed. This measure reduces exposure time and does not eliminate the hazard. If all control measures fail then the employer must provide their employees with appropriate PPE, along with training for usage, cleaning amp. maintenance of (CCOHS, 2011). PPE is worn to minimize exposure to a hazard and does not in any way reduce the hazard itself. Hence they are considered as the last resort/choice in control measures.A very common workplace hazard is noise pollution experienced on account of repair/maintenance being conducted nearby or in the same building on near floors or even on the same floor in an adjacent room. Usually, the employer provides earplugs or muffs (PPE) as a common control measure assuming that the discomfort/hazard is temporary and would be eliminated once the repair work is done. Wearing hearing protection reduces the noise and likelihood of hearing damage however does not in any way eliminate the noise. In order to protect oneself from noise damage the usage of PPE should be continuous and for that its design, comfortably, fitting and flexibility matters as well as it can directly affect work productivity. To make the company’s HSamp.E Policy more effective company can adopt a number of control measures than can improve the working condition if such a scenario is recurrent in nature and reduce the discomfort to employees when they come to work instead of relying on PPE as the last resort.A common administrative control measure can be changing the repair hours within the building/floor to after office hours or reducing the working hours during the repair period with proper PPE provision or designing temporary work shifts that limitless employees exposed to noise at the time of repair and others report when the repair work is over for the day. Another such measure can be shifting of the entire workplace to a temporary premise/location. The effectiveness of the control measures depends upon its feasibility and acceptability amongst the employees, the employers as well as the repair amp. maintenance team. The main hindrance can be the schedule changes which many employees would not find comfortable as they might have after-work obligations and plans that cannot be compromised like a family outing, gym, social gathering, hobby, activity or even a second job. Some might come to work from areas that are not safer to commute in during odd hours or have conveyance problem for changed timings. Employers might not be acceptable of the reduced work timings, lack of control and reduced work efficiencies. The main concern to them would be the cost of the control measures in terms of both application and its effect on performance and indirectly on the company’s profitability. Lastly, the repair and maintenance team working might not have the required equipment and people available after office hours. Hence planning a proper HSamp.E policy with effective control measures requires proper assessment of resources and utilities.
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