Six Safety Tips to Help You Get Through the Day
Jun. 4, 2015
Each June, the National Safety Council and thousands of other organizations celebrate National Safety Month by raising awareness about what it takes to stay safe in different areas of your life. To do our part, we’re offering some safety tips in the areas of driving and ergonomics – two areas that probably impact you throughout a typical day.
DRIVING SAFETY TIPS
Many of us spend a large portion of our time in our cars. Check out these driving-related tips to help keep you and your loved ones safe behind the wheel.
1) Stay off your phone while driving – even if it’s hands-free
Distracted driving accounts for 26% of all road-related fatalities, according to the National Safety Council’s Injury Facts 2015 Edition. And contrary to popular belief, any talking you do while driving – even if it’s on Bluetooth or another hands-free device – distracts you considerably from the task at hand. In fact, merely talking or listening to someone on the phone while driving can decrease the activity in your brain that’s responsible for processing moving images by up to a third.
2) Drive slow and keep a safe distance when the weather gets rough
We’ve all been caught driving in a bad storm – whether it was rain, snow, ice, wind or a mixture of each one. In these conditions, it’s important to reduce your speed, drastically if need be, and to increase the distance between you and the car in front of you. This will not only help you avoid accidents with other cars, it will help other cars avoid accidents with you. If visibility is low, it can also be a good idea to pull off the road until conditions improve.
3) Don’t speed
This tip is obvious, but it bears repeating. According to the National Safety Council’s Injury Facts 2015 Edition, speeding causes 30% of all road-related fatalities. Our Federal Highway Administration sets speed limits where they do for a reason. It’s safest to make sure you’re abiding by them at all times.
ERGONOMIC SAFETY TIPS
Ergonomics is the science of building a work or living space to fit the physical abilities and limitations of a person. The tips that follow can help you make sure you’re staying safe at home or work.
1) Focus on posture
When you were a child, your parents probably told you not to slouch and to sit up straight. You might have hated it at the time, but that was good advice. Slouching when you stand or sit puts more pressure on the discs and vertebrae in your back. Over time, this pressure can cause painful and potentially debilitating effects. For proper posture, make sure you sit and stand with a straight back, squared and relaxed shoulders, chest out, feet forward, stomach in and your hips and knees in a neutral position.
2) Get up and move
Whether you sit at a desk all day, work on an assembly line or in a warehouse, taking a break from your typical routine can do wonders for your body. Remaining in the same position or performing repetitive motions like lifting boxes over your head can put your body out of balance quickly. We recommend getting up regularly to stretch and walk to ensure your body stays in sync.
3) Practice proper viewing distance
If you have to spend most of your day looking at screens on your phone, computer and television, make sure they’re a safe distance from your eyes. No matter which kind of screen you’re looking at, it should be no closer than 20 inches from your eyes – or about arm’s length. Keeping your screens at a distance is easier on your eyes, can prevent them from drying out and can reduce viewing fatigue.If you have to spend most of your day looking at screens on your phone, computer and television, make sure they’re a safe distance from your eyes. No matter which kind of screen you’re looking at, it should be no closer than 20 inches from your eyes – or about arm’s length. Keeping your screens at a distance is easier on your eyes, can prevent them from drying out and can reduce viewing fatigue.