The Importance of Emergency Response Equipment in the Workplace

The Importance of Emergency Response Equipment in the Workplace
The Importance of Emergency Response Equipment in the Workplace teaser

24 Oct 2018

Safe Work Australia makes clear the responsibility of all persons conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) to have detailed workplace emergency plans in place. A critical element of such a plan is having appropriate equipment in place that can be used to mitigate the effects of an accident.
For this reason, an emergency safety shower and eye wash station is for many Australian businesses and organisations an essential piece of equipment.

Emergency Safety Showers and Eye Wash Stations Prevent Injury

The purpose of safety equipment is to prevent or minimise the potential effects of injuries that result from workplace accidents. Emergency safety showers and eye wash stations are crucial to achieving this because they can reduce the risk of long-term or even fatal injury that could result from a person coming into contact with chemicals or other hazardous materials.
Eye wash shower
Pictured: Eye Wash Shower
The actions taken in the first ten to fifteen seconds after a person has been exposed to hazardous or corrosive substances are crucial to minimising potential long-term damage. An emergency shower or eye wash unit will flush away dangerous substances and provide decontamination immediately during this crucial but limited timeframe.
An emergency shower flushes the entire body, not just the head, with an even distribution of water, while an eye wash unit will flush the eyes and face only. However, in many workplaces the ideal solution might be to install a combined unit that features both a shower and an eye wash station, so that relief can be provided in any emergency scenario.
Emergency eye face wash shower
Pictured: Emergency Eye / Face Wash Showers
A crucial factor in the efficacy of this type of emergency response equipment is its operation. An emergency shower is designed so that it can be turned on and operate at full capacity instantly, and will continue to work without the need for a tap or valve to be manually operated. Likewise, an eye wash station will have hands-free operation so that the person using it can instead use their hands to keep their eyes open as the liquid flushes them.

Safety and the link to workplace productivity

There is undoubtedly a link between workplace safety and productivity, both in terms of preventing disruptions to operations and in the way it impacts on a workforce’s sense of wellbeing and confidence.
Any business owner will be aware of the consequences of a workplace accident. A team member who is away from work due to injury can impact on schedules, while an accident that leads to shutdown — however short-lived it might be — can have devastating consequences, both financially and with regard to an organisation’s reputation.
Similarly, employers understand the productivity dividend that is gained from having a stable, experienced workforce where there is limited turnover. Providing effective emergency equipment, along with the appropriate training to use it, is a demonstration of an organisation’s commitment to safety and wellbeing, which is likely to inspire greater workforce loyalty that in tun leads to enhanced productivity.

Happy warehouse workers talking

Find out more about emergency safety showers and eye wash stations

If your workplace emergency plan requires an emergency safety shower or eye wash station, call us on 1300 305 314 or send us an email at to find out more about the range of options that are available.

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