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Safety rules for hazardous workplace materials

There are fundamental safety rules that all Georgia workers should follow when handling hazardous materials. Employers can make sure that their workers are familiar with these rules by presenting a list during each safety meeting.

The hazardous materials that are used in the workplace should only be used as they were intended. Employees should refrain from trying to use materials like gasoline to clean their equipment or chemical solvents to clean their hands.

Ingesting hazardous materials can be potentially fatal, which is why employees should not consume any drinks or food while they are handling the materials. They should avoid handling contact lenses or applying cosmetics if they suspect that their hands have been contaminated.

All of the hazardous materials in the workplace should be stored in the appropriate containers and in areas that are dry, cool and ventilated. Incompatible materials should be stored separately from one another to avoid any inadvertent mixtures that could result in a dangerous event like an explosion.

Maintaining a clean and orderly work area is another important part of being safe around hazardous workplace substances. Employees who handle any of the materials should thoroughly wash their hands and their work area. In order to reduce the risks of contamination, it is recommended that employees clean their work surfaces at least once during their work shift.

In the event of an emergency, employees should be knowledgeable of emergency equipment and protocols. They should know how and where to evacuate, the procedures for reporting emergencies and how to handle spills and fires.

A workers' compensation attorney may advise clients who have been injured due to inadequate workplace safety about their legal options. Assistance may be provided for claiming workers' compensation benefits and for handling the appeals process if claims have been denied.

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