Near accident: identification and management

A near miss is an important warning signal not to be ignored. Proper management of near accidents is crucial for health and safety in the workplace.

near-miss

Identification of the near miss

A missed accident can be defined as an accident that has not caused damage. To identify missed accidents or injuries, companies must implement an accurate and continuous monitoring system. This can include using incident reports, assessing the causes and risk factors that could lead to an accident, as well as analysing trends over time. It is important to involve all workers in the identification of missed accidents.

It is also useful to analyse the frequency of accidents. This indicator measures the number of accidents for a given number of hours worked or for a given period of time. A low frequency rate may indicate good management of safety at work, but it could also hide problems of under-reporting of accidents by workers. Therefore, it is important to analyze the data critically, taking into account all the factors that can affect the accuracy of the results. Identifying missed accidents is an important step in the effective management of occupational safety. Once identified, it is important to analyse the root causes and take measures to prevent future accidents.

Analysis of causes and risk factors

There are several categories of causes that can contribute to an accident at work. The immediate causes are directly related to the accident itself, such as human error or unsafe working conditions. The underlying causes, however, are deeper and rooted in the security management system. These may include organisational problems, such as lack of adequate training, ineffective communication or lack of oversight.

In addition to the causes, it is also important to consider risk factors that can contribute to occupational accidents. Risk factors are the conditions or situations that increase the likelihood of an accident occurring. They can be divided into two main categories: physical factors and psychosocial factors.

Physical factors include the use of dangerous machinery, the lack of adequate safety devices or incorrect posture during work. Psychosocial factors, on the other hand, concern relational and psychological aspects of work, such as excessive workload, lack of social support or lack of control over one’s work.

To carry out an accurate analysis of the causes and factors of risk, it is necessary to collect detailed data on accidents, examine operating procedures and interview workers. This information is essential to identify the main causes of accidents and develop effective interventions to prevent them.

Strategies for the prevention of near misses

The training of workers and the role of internal communication are fundamental elements for the management of accident avoidance within organizations. Training covers both accident prevention and management, providing employees with the necessary skills to avoid risky situations and to take appropriate action in the event of accidents. This training may include safety training, the correct use of instruments and equipment, as well as evacuation and first aid procedures.

Internal communication plays a key role in ensuring that all employees are aware of company security policies and any changes or updates. Internal communication must be clear, timely and accessible to all employees, using different channels such as group meetings, newsletters or corporate intranets. In this way, the dissemination of relevant information is encouraged and a climate of awareness and responsibility among employees is stimulated.

Training and communication shall be integrated into an accident management system that also includes the collection and analysis of accident data and related corrective actions. This makes it possible to identify the causes of accidents and to take preventive measures to avoid similar situations in the future.

Monitoring, evaluation and adaptation of preventive measures

Through monitoring it is possible to identify any shortcomings in the preventive measures taken, in order to be able to take timely action to correct the situation. Monitoring can be carried out in various ways, including the analysis of data on accidents and incidents at work, the analysis of warnings or near-accidents, and direct observation of working conditions.

Once monitoring has been carried out, it is necessary to assess the preventive measures taken. The evaluation can be carried out through the analysis of the data collected during the monitoring and by comparing these data with the set objectives. The objective of the evaluation is to identify any critical issues or areas for improvement.

Subsequently, on the basis of the results of the evaluation, the preventive measures are adjusted. This can be done by modifying or implementing new preventive measures in order to minimise the risks to the health and safety of workers.

Monitoring, evaluation and adaptation of preventive measures are a continuous and dynamic process. Working conditions can change over time, as can the associated risks. Therefore, it is crucial that the organization is able to adapt and modify preventive measures according to new needs. In conclusion, monitoring, evaluation and adaptation of preventive measures are essential tools for ensuring safety at work. Through constant monitoring, accurate assessment and timely adaptation of preventive measures, a safe and efficient working environment can be created, minimising the risk of accidents and injuries.


Ministerial indications for the return to school 2023/24: protocol for students positive to COVID-19

On 10 August, a decree was published in the Official Journal abolishing the obligations of isolation and self-surveillance and amending the rules relating to the monitoring of the epidemiological situation caused by the spread of the SARSCoV2 virus.

Subsequently, the Ministry of Health issued a circular on 11 August, which, in view of the new regulatory framework without restrictions, offers guidelines on the behavior to be adopted in the event of a contraction of COVID-19.

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The Ministerial Circular of 11 August 2023

The Ministerial Circular recommends that persons who test positive for SARSCoV-2 should take the same precautionary measures that are effective in preventing the spread of most respiratory infections, that is:

  • use respiratory protection, such as a surgical mask or FFP2, when interacting with other people;
  • stay at home until the symptoms disappear in case of symptomatic manifestations;
  • frequently sanitize the hands;
  • avoid crowded environments;
  • avoid contact with vulnerable, immunodepressed individuals, pregnant women, and refrain from visiting hospitals or assisted health residences;
  • inform people with whom you have had contact before diagnosis, especially if they are elderly or fragile;
  • consult your doctor if you fall into the category of fragile or immunodepressed people, in case of persistence of symptoms over 3 days or a worsening of health conditions.

Positive contacts

As regards people who have had contact with positive individuals, there are no special restrictions or mandatory isolation measures. However, it is recommended to remain vigilant and carefully monitor your health for the appearance of any symptoms that might suggest a COVID-19 infection. These symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, fatigue, and can manifest themselves in the days immediately following contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19.

In conclusion, even if there are no mandatory restrictions, it is essential to show social responsibility and solidarity, doing everything possible to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and protect the most vulnerable people in the community.


Microclimate

The microclimate is an important aspect to consider in any environment, whether internal or external. However, the main discomforts of the microclimate concern mainly indoor environments, where temperature and humidity can affect the health and well-being of people.

microclimate

What is microclimate in the workplace?

The microclimate in the working environment is the set of climatic conditions that occur within a working environment, such as temperature, relative air humidity, wind speed, atmospheric pressure and air quality. These factors can affect the well-being and productivity of workers, so it is important to make an assessment of the microclimate to ensure a safe and comfortable working environment.

The assessment of the microclimate involves the analysis of climatic conditions within the working environment in order to identify any problems. For example, excessive relative humidity can create ideal conditions for the growth of mold and fungi, which in turn can cause allergies and respiratory diseases.

For example, excessive relative humidity can create ideal conditions for the growth of mold and fungi, which in turn can cause allergies and respiratory diseases.

Microclimate risk is a complex assessment, requiring analysis of several variables such as temperature, relative humidity, wind speed and solar radiation. Microclimate evaluation includes measurement of air temperature, relative air humidity, air velocity, and solar radiation. All these factors can affect workers’ thermal comfort and their ability to perform work efficiently.

Assessment of the microclimate may also include examination of the lighting conditions in the working environment. Good lighting is essential to ensure a comfortable and safe environment for workers.

Finally, the assessment of the microclimate also includes the examination of air quality in the working environment. The presence of pollutants in the air can cause respiratory problems, allergies and diseases.

Microclimate and thermal wellness

The current legislation in Italy provides for the use of specific evaluation indices to verify that the climate parameters are in line with the needs of users. In particular, the UNI EN 15251 standard establishes the criteria of thermal comfort for buildings and indoor activities, considering various factors such as air temperature, air speed, relative humidity and average radiant temperature. The main benchmark for assessing thermal comfort is the PMV (Predicted Mean Vote), which takes into account the thermal sensations of occupants and environmental conditions.

As for outdoor environments, the UTCI (Universal Thermal Climate Index) is used, which considers not only air temperature but also other factors such as solar radiation, wind speed and relative humidity. This index has been developed to assess the risk of thermal stress for people working outdoors or practicing sports.

This index has been developed to assess the risk of thermal stress for people working outdoors or practicing sports.

The categories of microclimatic environments

The first category concerns working environments. In these spaces, temperature, humidity and ventilation can affect workers’ productivity and health. It is important to maintain an adequate temperature and a relative humidity between 40% and 60%. In addition, it is essential to ensure proper ventilation to avoid accumulation of carbon dioxide and other pollutants.

The second category concerns domestic environments. Again, the above applies to the workplace.

The third category concerns hospital environments. In these spaces, temperature, humidity and ventilation can affect patients’ healing. It is important to maintain an adequate temperature (between 20° and 25° C) and a relative humidity between 40% and 60%. And it is essential to ensure proper ventilation to prevent the spread of pathogens.

The fourth category concerns school environments. In these spaces, temperature, humidity and ventilation can affect students’ learning. It is important to maintain an adequate temperature (between 18° and 22° C) and a relative humidity between 40% and 60%. In addition, it is essential to ensure proper ventilation to avoid accumulation of carbon dioxide and other pollutants.

The microclimate in moderate environments

The microclimate in moderate environments is a fundamental aspect to be taken into account in order to guarantee the well-being of the individuals who frequent such spaces. Regulations and benchmarks represent an indispensable tool for the evaluation of the microclimate, in order to ensure compliance with legal limits and an adequate level of thermal comfort.

The Decree 81/2008 lays down rules on health and safety at work, including the obligation to provide workers with a comfortable and safe working environment. In particular, article 191 provides for the need to take all appropriate measures to protect the health of workers from exposure to risks arising from environmental working conditions.

To evaluate the microclimate in moderate environments, there are several benchmarks such as operating temperature, relative humidity and air velocity. The operating temperature represents the temperature actually perceived by individuals, taking into account the environmental conditions and the activities carried out. Relative humidity indicates the amount of water vapour in the air and is important to avoid breathing problems or skin irritation. And air velocity is essential to avoid convection cooling phenomena.

To ensure an adequate level of thermal comfort, there are also other specific regulations such as the UNI EN ISO 7730 standard, which defines the parameters for the assessment of thermal comfort and the PMV well-being index (predicted mean vote). This index takes into account operating temperature, relative humidity, air velocity, clothing and the activity of individuals.

The microclimate in severe hot and cold environments

The assessment of the microclimate in severe hot and cold environments requires special attention. In hot environments such as foundries, steel mills or thermal power plants, the microclimate can pose a major challenge to workers’ health. High temperatures can cause dehydration, heat stroke and other disturbances that can compromise working capacity and increase the risk of workplace accidents.

Specific instruments such as probe thermometers or humidity sensors can be used to evaluate the microclimate in these environments. In addition, it is important to carry out an assessment of workers’ heat exposure, which takes into account not only the environmental temperature but also the relative humidity, air speed and activities carried out by the workers themselves.

Even in cold environments such as cold stores or ski resorts, the assessment of the microclimate is crucial to ensure the comfort of operators and visitors. Low temperatures can cause hypothermia, freezing of the extremities and other diseases related to exposure to cold. Also useful in this case are probe thermometers or humidity sensors, as well as the evaluation of the air speed and cold exposure of workers. Of course, it is important to provide adequate room thermal insulation and adequate heating systems.

What is the comfortable microclimate?

There are several factors that can affect the perception of the microclimate by workers. First, the temperature: too hot or too cold environment can cause discomfort and stress. The ideal temperature depends on the activities carried out within the working environment; too low air humidity can cause dryness of the nasal and ocular mucosa, while too high humidity can promote the growth of mold and bacteria. The ideal humidity should be between 40% and 60%.

Ventilation is another crucial aspect to ensure a comfortable microclimate. Insufficient ventilation can cause accumulation of pollutants in the air, such as dust or chemicals in the materials used in the working environment.

Also the quality of lighting can affect the perception of microclimate by workers. Too bright or poorly distributed light can cause visual fatigue and headaches.

In conclusion, a comfortable microclimate improves the quality of life of workers, reduces the risk of climate-related diseases and increases productivity.



Legionella, infection risk

Legionella is a bacterium that can cause serious respiratory diseases such as legionellosis. Legionella bacteria can proliferate in the water systems of buildings. The risk of infection by water is relatively high since legionella can survive in water at temperatures between 20°C and 50°C, ideal for bacterial growth. Water systems in buildings, such as cooling towers, air conditioners and domestic hot water distribution systems, can be real incubators for legionella.

legionella

How to avoid the proliferation of legionella in the water systems of buildings

Legionella is transmitted through the inhalation of small infected water droplets, such as those produced by showers, taps or air conditioning. The disease is not transmitted from person to person. To prevent legionellosis it is important to keep the water systems clean and well cared for. This includes regular cleaning of cooling towers and water tanks, maintaining water temperatures below 20 ºC or above 60 ºC, eliminating stagnant water in water systems, and controlling the concentration of chlorine in water.

Identification of risk areas and monitoring of water systems

Identification of risk areas and monitoring of water systems play a key role in preventing the proliferation of legionella in buildings.

First, it is important to carry out a detailed analysis of water systems to identify any critical points, such as heat storage tanks, water storage tanks and misting systems.

Once these critical points have been identified, installations should be regularly monitored for anomalies or changes in control parameters. In particular, the monitoring of water systems shall include the measurement of water temperature at different points in the plant, verification of the presence of chemicals such as chlorine and periodic review of plants to ensure that they comply with current regulations.

In addition, it is useful to take preventive measures to keep the plant in optimal hygienic conditions, such as periodic cleaning of heat storage tanks and water storage tanks.

Regular maintenance and cleaning of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems

Regular maintenance and cleaning of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems are essential to prevent the proliferation of legionella in buildings. Air conditioning is one of the most common places where legionella can proliferate.

Regular maintenance includes periodic checks to detect any leakage or failure, replacement of worn parts and cleaning of the entire air conditioning system. Cleaning the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems requires the use of specific detergents to remove the deposits of limestone, dust, bacteria and other contaminants that can accumulate inside the plant.

There are several types of water treatment system that can be used to prevent the growth of legionella, including the use of biocides, the installation of filters, and water disinfection. One of the most common methods to prevent the growth of legionella is the use of biocides. These chemicals are added to water systems to kill any bacteria present and prevent their proliferation. Biocidal products may be based on chlorine, bromine, iodine or other chemical compounds.

Another effective method of preventing the growth of legionella is the installation of filters in water systems. Filters remove particles that can feed the bacteria and can significantly reduce the risk of legionella infection. There are several types of filters that can be used, including active carbon filters and ultraviolet filters.

Finally, water disinfection can also be carried out by physical methods such as ultraviolet irradiation. Maintenance must be carried out by qualified and specialized personnel, able to guarantee the effectiveness of cleaning operations and compliance with safety standards.

Water temperature control in water systems

Water temperature control is one of the main factors in preventing the proliferation of legionella in building water systems. Since the ideal temperature for the growth of the bacterium is between 20°C and 45°C keeping water outside this temperature range prevents the proliferation of legionella.

In Italy, potable water must be kept at a temperature between 10ºC and 25ºC at the point of distribution. However, in certain cases, such as in hospitals or nursing homes, hot water can be kept at a temperature above 60 ºC in order to disinfect plants and prevent the spread of bacteria. Thanks to the use of thermometers it is possible to constantly monitor the water temperature and adjust the hot water temperature to the points where the risk of contamination is greatest. To further reduce the risk of legionella proliferation, water cooling or heat treatment devices can be installed, which keep the water below the ideal temperature for the growth of the bacterium.


The defibrillator: when it is obligatory and how to use it

The defibrillator, a device that can save lives, but still too often is underestimated or ignored: when it is mandatory to have one available and especially how to use it in an emergency? Every year lots of people are affected by sudden cardiac arrest and part of them lose their lives because they were not rescued promptly. What are the regulations regarding the obligation of defibrillators in public and private places? Which structures must be to provide? If not, what are penalties?

defibrillator

Requirements and regulations for compulsory defibrillators

The defibrillator can be manual, automatic, semi-automatic or implantable, and serves to defibrillate a patient affected by cardiac arrest or ventricular fibrillation by delivering an electric discharge to the heart.

External automatic or semi-automatic defibrillators (AED) are an important first aid tool in the event of sudden cardiac arrest. Their dissemination and the mandatory presence of AED in public or private places is subject to specific requirements and regulations. The AED is mandatory only in some contexts: for example, in workplaces with over 15 employees, in gyms with more than 300 square meter2 area, sports facilities with a seating capacity of more than 500, high-traffic areas such as airports or railway stations with an average of at least 500 people per day, in accommodation facilities such as hotels with at least 25 beds and in medical transport.

Pertanto, l’acquisto e l’utilizzo dei DAE deve essere effettuato seguendo specifiche normative che regolamentano la qualità del dispositivo e la formazione necessaria per il suo corretto utilizzo. These regulations are dictated by the Ministry of Health, the Italian Society of Emergency Medicine and the Italian Federation of Cardiology. Shortly, AED must comply with EC standards and EN 60601-1.

In addition, for the use of the AED, specific training is required by personnel holding a certificate of first aid and a specific course for the use of the defibrillator. This training must be renewed periodically and ensure adequate knowledge of the procedures for use and the actions to be taken in the event of sudden cardiac arrest.

Positioning and maintenance of the defibrillator in public and private places

It is essential that the defibrillator is easily accessible, visible and strategically located. First, it is important to assess the frequency and type of activity carried out at the place where you intend to place the defibrillator. The ideal place for placing the defibrillator is an easily accessible, clearly visible and possibly protected place in a suitable case.

The defibrillator must be regularly maintained so that, for example, the batteries must be checked to ensure they are fully charged and replaced when necessary. Also, check that the conductive wires are in good condition and that the adhesive bearings are properly attached, replacing them if necessary.

Who can use the AED?

The defibrillator can be used by doctors and non-medical health personnel, but also by non-health personnel provided they are trained specifically.

Training for the use of the AED

Mandatory training for the use of the AED is essential to be able to intervene promptly in case of sudden cardiac arrest. The Italian legislation provides for the obligation for certain categories of people, such as health professionals, school staff and staff of companies, to be trained in the use of the AED.

The training consists of a theoretical and a practical part, so that participants acquire the necessary skills to use the DAE correctly. The theoretical part examines the basic concepts on the physiology of the heart, the causes of cardiac arrest and the modalities of intervention with the AED. In addition, the operation of the external semi-automatic defibrillator and the precautions to be taken during the intervention is explained.

On the other hand practical practice consists of exercises on a dummy to simulate the various situations in which sudden cardiac arrest may occur. Participants learn how to place the adhesive plates on the patient’s chest, how to activate the defibrillator and how to follow the voice instructions provided by the device.

Procedure for proper use of the defibrillator during a heart emergency

First you need to verify that the defibrillator is able to work properly and that it is loaded at least 50% of its capacity. Next, you have to access the adhesive pads, removing the protective paper and placing them on the chest of the person to be rescued, following the instructions on the device.

Una volta posizionate le pad, è necessario collegare il defibrillatore mediante i cavi forniti e accendere il dispositivo, seguendo le istruzioni riportate sul display. The defibrillator automatically performs a heart rhythm analysis and, if a ventricular fibrillation or a ventricular tachycardia without a pulse is detected, it will beep indicating to press the discharge button.

Before you press the discharge button, you should make sure that all the people present are far away. Then press the button firmly and wait until the defibrillator emits an electric discharge. After discharge, the defibrillator will resume the analysis of the patient’s heart rate and will indicate whether it is necessary to repeat the procedure. If no more electrical heart activity is detected, it will be necessary to immediately begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation.


Ionizing radiation

What is ionizing radiation and why is it harmful to health?

Ionizing radiation is a type of energy that is able to remove electrons from atoms, creating ions. This type of radiation can cause damage to living tissues, increasing the risk of cancer, heart disease and other pathologies.

Ionizing radiation can be emitted from natural sources such as the sun, but also from human activities such as the use of radioactive materials in medicine or industry. The most common sources of ionizing radiation are X-rays, gamma radiation and beta particles.

Ionizing-radiation

Our body can handle a certain amount of ionizing radiation exposure without suffering permanent damage. However, exposure to high doses can be extremely harmful to health.

The tissues of our body are composed of cells that can be damaged by ionizing radiation. When cells undergo DNA damage, this can lead to the formation of genetic mutations that can cause diseases such as cancer.

Exposure to ionizing radiation can also affect the immune system and cardiovascular system, increasing the risk of heart disease and other pathologies.

To reduce the risks associated with exposure to ionizing radiation, it is important to take appropriate precautions when working with radioactive materials or performing medical procedures involving the use of X-rays or other radiation sources.

How do ionizing and non-ionizing radiation work?

Radiation is a type of energy that propagates in the environment in the form of waves or particles. There are two main types of radiation: non-ionizing and ionizing radiation. Ionizing radiation is able to remove electrons from the atoms of the human body, causing damage to cells and tissues. This type of radiation can be produced naturally (from radioactive rocks for example) or artificially (from nuclear power plants, atomic weapons).

Non-ionizing radiation does not have enough energy to remove electrons from the atoms of the human body. This type of radiation can be produced from natural sources (such as the sun) or artificial (such as mobile phones). However, non-ionizing radiation can cause health damage, such as overheating of body tissues.

In general, people are more exposed to non-ionising radiation than ionizing radiation: exposure to radio waves emitted by mobile phones is much more common than radiation exposure produced by nuclear power plants.

What is ionizing radiation?

Ionizing radiation can be divided into two categories: alpha and beta particles and gamma rays and X. Alpha and beta particles consist of particles of matter moving at extremely high speeds. Gamma and X-rays consist of high-energy electromagnetic waves.

Alpha radiation consists of charged particles of two protons and two neutrons (helium nucleus) that are emitted by some unstable atomic nuclei. Because of their high mass, they have a low penetration capacity in materials and can be blocked by a thin layer of paper or fabric.

Beta radiation consists of charged particles (electrons or positrons) that move at high speeds. They are emitted by some unstable atomic nuclei during radioactive decay. Beta radiation has a higher penetration rate than alpha radiation, but is still limited. They can be blocked by a thicker material than alpha radiation, such as aluminum foil.

Gamma radiation consists of high-energy photons that have no electric charge. They are produced by the decay of unstable atomic nuclei and can penetrate deep into materials. Gamma radiation is the most dangerous to human health, as it can cause DNA damage and increase the risk of cancer.

In addition to the three main types of ionizing radiation, there is also neutron radiation, which consists of high-energy free neutrons. This form of radiation is produced during some nuclear reactions and has a high penetration capacity into materials.

The effect of ionizing radiation on the human body depends on the amount of energy absorbed and the duration of exposure. Exposure to high doses of ionizing radiation can cause tissue damage, including cell mutation.

How to measure ionizing radiation?

There are several instruments used to measure ionizing radiation. The most common is the dosimeter, which is worn by people exposed to radiation in order to detect the amount of radiation to which they were exposed. This tool can be used in working environments such as medical centers or nuclear plants where the risk of radiation exposure is greater.

Another instrument used to measure ionizing radiation is the radiometer. This instrument is used to detect the amount of radiation present in the surrounding environment. This instrument is used to detect the amount of radiation present in the surrounding environment.

There are also more sophisticated instruments such as Geiger-Muller counters, which are mainly used in science and industry. These tools can detect even the smallest particles and can be used to monitor the radioactivity of soil or water.

In addition, it is possible to measure ionizing radiation through the analysis of biological samples such as blood or urine. This technique is mainly used in the medical field to monitor exposure to ionizing radiation by patients undergoing radiation therapy.

Exposure to ionizing radiation and protection

Ionizing radiation is present in different environments and situations: in nuclear power plants, in research laboratories or in industries that use radioactive materials. These radiations are produced by sources such as plutonium, uranium or caesium-137 and can cause health damage if not handled properly.

Other places where you may be exposed to ionizing radiation are hospitals. Here they are used to diagnose and treat certain diseases, through the use of X-rays, computed tomography (CT) or radiotherapy. Although these techniques can save lives, their repeated exposure can pose health risks.

Gli ambienti esterni possono anche contenere radiazioni ionizzanti, ad esempio a causa di eventi naturali come eruzioni vulcaniche o terremoti. In addition, cosmic rays from space can penetrate Earth’s atmosphere and cause exposure to ionizing radiation.

Even objects around us can emit ionizing radiation. For example, some types of minerals contain radioactive elements such as thorium or uranium. Even lamps with low electrical consumption emit ionizing radiation, although in very small quantities.

Ionizing radiation is a potential health risk and therefore there are a number of protective and preventive measures to reduce exposure. First of all, it is important to limit exposure to radiation sources. For example, if you are working in an environment where you are using machines that emit ionizing radiation, it is important to wear protective equipment such as protective screens or coveralls.

Secondly, it is important to monitor exposure to ionizing radiation. This can be done by measuring the radiation dose received by the body. There are specific tools for this purpose that can be used to monitor radiation exposure.


Work-related-stress

Stress at work is a physiological and psychological response to stressful events in the workplace. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including tight deadlines, work overload, interpersonal conflicts, lack of control at work and lack of support from colleagues or employers. The assessment of related work stress is part of the employer’s obligations.

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Work-related stress can have a negative impact on the mental and physical health of workers, as well as on company productivity. Therefore, it is important to assess the risk of work-related stress in the company.

The risk assessment work related stress

The risk assessment of work-related stress is a fundamental process to ensure the well-being of workers and the health of the company that includes several stages. In assessing the risk of work-related stress in the company, it is important to take into account the indicators of work-related stress of content and context.

The content indicators concern the work itself, such as the amount of work, its complexity, working autonomy, tight deadlines, the repetitiveness of activities and the lack of control at work.

Context indicators, on the other hand, refer to the environment and interpersonal relationships in the workplace, such as social isolation, uncertainty of the job role and lack of support from colleagues or employers.

The assessment of the two types of indicators should be accurate and detailed in order to identify the workers most at risk of developing related work stress. This way you can plan the most appropriate interventions to reduce stress and improve the well-being of employees.

Preparatory stage

The preparatory stage involves identifying the risk factors present in the organization, from the work context to the management of human resources, to internal and external communication. In this phase, a first analysis of the company situation is carried out, evaluating the organizational and productive characteristics of the company and collecting information on the tasks performed by the employees.

The main objective is to identify possible stress factors related to work activities. At this stage, it is also possible to collect data on the presence of any stress signals among employees. It is important that the preparatory phase is carried out carefully and carefully, so that you have a complete picture of the work situation in which you will be operating later with the subsequent stages of risk assessment.

Stage of the preliminary assessment

The preliminary assessment phase examines the factors identified in the previous phase, analysing the sources of stress and the consequences for the people involved. At this stage, the necessary information is collected through the analysis of available data sources such as company documentation, absenteeism statistics, job satisfaction, etc. direct observation of the places of work and the environments in which work is carried out, as well as interviews with workers.

When the information is collected, it is analysed in order to identify possible risk factors for work-related stress which may be of an organisational or psychosocial nature. At this stage, it is important to involve all stakeholders in order to obtain a comprehensive picture of the situation and ensure a participatory approach to risk management. The correct preliminary assessment allows to identify in a timely manner the problems and the critical areas in which to intervene to prevent or reduce the related work stress.

Stage of the in-depth assessment

During the in-depth assessment phase, indicators of work related stress, both of content and context, are identified to better understand the causes of the problem. The data collected during the preliminary assessment are analysed in more detail and precisely to identify the main causes of stress in the company’s workers.

To best perform this activity, it is necessary to use specific tools that allow to collect information regarding the tasks performed, the working context and interpersonal relationships within the organization. The in-depth evaluation phase allows the identification of the critical aspects of the work that can generate stress and the definition of the objectives of the interventions to be carried out in the next planning phase.

Planning phase of the interventions

Finally, we move on to the planning phase of the interventions, where the most appropriate solutions to reduce related work stress are identified. Once the preparatory stages, the preliminary assessment and the in-depth assessment have been completed, it is time to draw up a personalised action plan for each worker or group of workers showing signs of work-related stress. This plan shall be based on the results of the risk assessment and shall include preventive and corrective measures appropriate to the individual situation.

The planning of interventions should involve all hierarchical levels of the company, so as to ensure effective collaboration between the employer and employees in the management of work-related stress. In addition, the action plan should be constantly monitored and updated according to the feedback received from workers and the evolution of working conditions within the company. Only through careful and targeted planning will it be possible to effectively reduce work-related stress and improve the quality of life of workers.

Work stress indicators can be reduced by targeted interventions on company internal communication, employee training and workload management.

How to reduce work-related stress?

To reduce related work stress, there are several strategies that can be adopted both at the individual and company level. First of all, effective time management is essential to organize activities so as to avoid work overload and stress. At the company level, good communication between colleagues helps create a more serene and collaborative work environment.


The electrical risk

Electrical risk assessment: definition, legislation, effects, employer obligations

Electrical risk is one of the main hazards in many working environments. It consists in the possibility of direct or indirect contact with electricity, which can have devastating effects on the health of the workers involved.

Legislative Decree 81/08 defines the electrical risk as the possibility that a person comes into contact with electrical parts under voltage directly or indirectly, due to the presence of a dangerous electrical potential. Legislative Decree 81/08 provides for the obligation for the employer to assess the electrical risk present in the workplace and to take all necessary measures to ensure the safety of workers.

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Among the mandatory measures provided by law, we find the grounding of the active parts, the installation of differential devices sensitive to residual current, the use of tools and equipment suitable for the work to be done and properly maintained.

The effects of electrical risk can be extremely severe: electric shocks, burns, ventricular fibrillation and cardiocirculatory arrest are just some of the examples. For this reason, the employer is obliged to provide its employees with the necessary information and training to avoid the risk of accidents.

In particular, the legislation provides for the obligation for the employer to instruct workers on the electrical risks present in the workplace, the preventive measures taken by the company and the procedures to be followed in case of emergency.

The electrical risk legislation

The reference Italian legislation is constituted by Legislative Decree 81/08 and the CEI 11-27 standard, which defines the safety requirements for the design, installation, management and maintenance of electrical systems and low voltage equipment. This standard provides guidance for the assessment of risks related to electricity, the definition of prevention and protection measures and requirements for the periodic verification of installations.

Shortly, the legislation provides that workers operating in the presence of electricity must be adequately trained and informed about the risks associated with the use of electricity. Also, electrical equipment and installations must be designed, installed and maintained to ensure maximum safety for operators. It also provides for the obligation to periodically carry out technical checks on the functionality of electrical systems to prevent any failure or malfunction that could cause accidents.

As regards the protection of workers from electric shocks, the legislation requires the use of suitable PPE such as insulating gloves, safety footwear and protective helmets. In addition, workers must be provided with appropriate emergency response equipment, such as fire extinguishers, first aid kits and explosion-proof telephones.

Electrical risk assessment

The electrical risk is always present in every working environment where electricity is used. Electrical risk assessment is a key activity to prevent accidents at work related to electricity. This assessment consists in identifying, evaluating and managing electrical hazards in a work environment, in order to ensure the safety of workers.

1. Identificazione dei pericoli

First, identify areas where there is a high risk of lightning strike, including areas where there is high voltage electrical equipment, such as components of the power supply system.

2. Risk assessment

Once the risk areas have been identified, the level of risk associated with each area is assessed. This includes assessing the potential for electrical voltage, the frequency of storms, and the type of terrain around.

3. Preventive measures determination

Based on the risk assessment, the preventive measures to be taken to minimise the risk are outlined. Such measures may include the creation of standard operating procedures, the use of personal protective equipment or the modification of the working environment in order to reduce the risk of accidents. a plan to reduce the risk of lightning strike.

4. Monitoring

At last, it is important to regularly monitor the plan to make sure it is effective in reducing the risk of lightning strike through periodic review and updating based on new risk information.

The system of protection from atmospheric discharges

The lightning discharge protection system, commonly known as a lightning rod, is a system installed on structures to prevent damage caused by lightning discharges during storms. The plant works by dispersing the electric charge generated by the atmospheric discharge into the ground through a system of electrical conductors.

The installation of the lightning rod ensures the safety of people inside the structures by protecting electrical installations and electronic equipment from damage caused by discharges.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the risk assessment of fulmination is important to reduce the risk of fulmination in a specific area. By following the steps described above, you can develop an effective plan to reduce risk and ensure the safety of staff working with electricity.



The DUVRI

What is DUVRI and how it should be written?

The DUVRI means Single Interferential Risk Assessment Document and it is the document that identifies and evaluates risks in the workplace during a contract. It aims to eliminate or minimize interference that may arise from the activities of the companies involved and is regulated by art. 26 of Legislative Decree 81/08.

The responsibility for drafting the DUVRI lies with the principal employer for contract works and not with the undertakings or self-employed workers to whom the contract has been awarded. However, they are still required to cooperate and provide all the documents necessary to highlight possible risks. The DUVRI must be prepared or updated each time new contracts are concluded.

The DUVRI is not necessary for the yards where the PSC or Plan of Safety and Coordination has already been prepared and accepted by the executing Enterprises. In these cases, the contractors must prepare the Operational Safety Plan (POS) as the risks of interference have already been addressed by the PSC. The DUVRI must be set up only in situations where it is possible to eliminate or reduce the risk of interference between the contractor’s workers and those of the contractors. If this is not possible, the DUVRI will consist of a statement of the DLC formalizing the impossibility of eliminating or reducing these risks, together with specific justifications of the case. In these cases, the decisions taken during the coordination meeting between all the employers involved, primarily the Employer, will be crucial to ensure safety. It is important to note that the DUVRI is an obligation of the employer, but its drafting can be delegated to third parties.

When it is to be drawn up

According to art. 26 of Legislative Decree 81/08 you have the obligation to draw up the DUVRI when the Employer of a client company entrusts the performance of work or services within its workplace to a contractor or self-employed. But it cannot be drafted for:

  • Intellectual nature services,
  • supply of materials,
  • work or services of less than 5 man-days duration,
  • if there is the Security Plan under Coordination.

Art. 29 also informs of obligations:

  • information: it concerns the obligation to inform the contractor about the characteristics of the context in which it will operate,
  • coordination: it refers to those actions that the employer of the client company must take
  • to prevent disagreements, overlaps and other occurrences that may affect safety,
  • cooperation: it means that both the employer and the employer must contribute to the preparation and implementation of the necessary preventive and protective measures

The interference risks

Interference risks are classified as risks placed in the contractor’s workplace by the contractor’s work (incoming risks) and as specific risks present in the contractor’s normal business, not normally present in the contractor’s business (risks on exit).

Risks from physical contiguity and space are those risks that arise from overlaps of multiple activities carried out by
several contractors, while the commission risks arise from particular implementing rules, requested by the client.

The DUVRI characteristics

The DUVRI must be integrated with the DVR, even if it is independent of it; it must be finalized to manage the interferential risks and to be single for all the contracts that involve interfering risks.

As regards the minimum content:

  • the criteria used must be identified,
  • there must be a description of the contracting company and the activities that take place during the contract,
  • the activities of the contractors and the working areas available to them shall be described.

Also there must be:

  • the chronoprogramme of activities,
  • the organisation of the preventive and protective measures to be taken,
  • the estimated costs of safety,
  • the coordination of work phases.

Update of the DUVRI

When an update of the DUVRI is required, the contracting employer must convene a coordination meeting with the operators involved to identify improvement measures. Some contracts can be affected and adjusted by redefining security costs, or a new contract may be required.


the safety trainer

What are the requirements of a safety trainer?

A certified safety trainer is a specialist who possesses the knowledge and skills necessary to carry out teaching activities. He is trained to identify potential hazards, assess risks, and design safety training programs tailored to a company’s specific needs.

safety-trainer

The figure of the safety trainer is regulated by Legislative Decree 81/08 and by Interministerial Decree 6th March, 2013. This decree sets out the requirements that safety trainers must have and identifies three different thematic areas relevant to health and safety at work:

  • regulatory/legal/organisational area,
  • area of technical/sanitary risks,
  • relations/communications area.

The qualified safety trainer

The qualified safety trainer is the teacher who has the prerequisite and at least one of the criteria indicated by the Interministerial Decree 6th March, 2013. The prerequisite is the secondary school diploma.

One of the questions that are most often asked is whether the RSPP is also a qualified trainer and the answer is yes if it complies with criterion 6 or: previous experience as a RSPP of at least 6 months or as an ASPP of at least 12 months together with one of the following specifications:

  • educational course of minimum duration of 24 hours;
  • previous experience as a teacher of at least 32 hours in the last 3 years as a teacher of safety;
  • previous experience as a teacher of at least 40 hours in the last 3 years as a teacher in any subject;
  • training courses in addition to a teacher of at least 48 hours in the last 3 years as a teacher in any subject.

Criterion 5 is useful for defining the qualified trainer where the candidate for safety trainer has at least three years’ work experience in health and safety at work together with one of the specific views above for criterion 6.

The designer of the training

Those who design a training course must not only possess the necessary skills on the subject, but must also have teaching skills that allow to optimize the learning path. A training intervention starts from the needs, is then designed and then carried out with a final evaluation. The training process consists of four phases: analysis, design, implementation and evaluation. Depending on the type of course, it is useful to integrate lessons, exercises and simulations.