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Survey: Vast Majority of Operators Stay on Top of Safety Programs

Carlo Calma |

CHICAGO — Workplace safety remains a top priority among institutional and industrial laundry managers and administrators, based on data from this month’s American Laundry News Wire survey.

For roughly 41% of respondents, it’s been more than 24 months since they last recorded a lost-time injury—a nonfatal traumatic injury that caused any loss of time from work beyond the day/shift during which it occurred—in their operation.

Only a small percentage (4.5%) have recorded a lost-time injury within the last 30 days, while other operations report having gone longer periods of time since their last such incident: one to six months ago, 18.2%; seven to 12 months ago, 13.6%; and 13 to 18 months ago, 9.1%. No one who responded to the survey reported having logged a lost-time injury 19 to 24 months ago.

Roughly 14% of respondents said they “don’t know” when the last lost-time injury was recorded in their operation.

The vast majority of laundry managers and administrators polled—90.9%—report that they provide safety training/testing as part of a new employee’s orientation to their laundry/linen services operation, as well as continuing safety education or training for workers.

“Proper body mechanics and safety lock-outs are the most important things for us,” says one respondent to the anonymous survey. Another describes the structure of his/her workplace safety program, saying, “We have a corporate safety manager, and each plant has a safety officer.”

Have you ever sought assistance from a consultant or other knowledgeable industry resource to visit your plant and assess its safety? Only slightly more than one-third of respondents (36.4%) to this month’s survey say they have sought such help to make their laundry/linen services operation safer.

More than three-quarters of respondents (77.3%) say their operation has never been fined by a regulatory agency for a safety violation during their tenure. Roughly 14% have been fined, and 9.1% of respondents “don’t know” if they’ve been fined.

A blocked electrical panel was the nature of one violation that drew a fine. Another manager explained that his/her operation’s citation stemmed from having “no tool rest on a grinder.”

While the Wire survey presents a snapshot of readers’ viewpoints at a particular moment, it should not be considered scientific.

Subscribers to Wire e-mails—distributed twice weekly—are invited to take the industry survey anonymously online each month. All managers and administrators of institutional/OPL, cooperative, commercial and industrial laundries are encouraged to participate, as a greater number of responses will help to better define operator opinions and industry trends.

About the author

Carlo Calma

American Trade Magazines

Editorial Assistant

Carlo Calma is editorial assistant at American Trade Magazines.

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