Control measures 6 - Other methods of control

General cleanliness

Keeping a clean and organized workplace is an important method of controlling hazards. Good housekeeping (keeping a clean workplace) reduces the risk of fire and is cost-effective, since machines and tools that are cleaned regularly need less servicing. At the same time, maintaining a pleasant working environment can produce higher productivity.

Good work practices include:

  • proper cleaning at regular intervals (using industrial vacuum cleaner)
  • proper waste disposal
  • proper and immediate clean-up of any spills
  • proper sprinkling of scrubbing agent to absorb or to dilute the toxic gases release into the environment or work place
  • correct storage and labelling of materials.

A few examples of best and poor practices of housekeeping are shown below:

Caution Hard Hat Area
Standardized hard hat signage.


Danger High Voltage Within Keep Out
Standard electrical safety sign with warning symbol.


First aid

Every workplace should have at least minimal first-aid facilities as well as adequate personnel trained to provide first aid. First-aid facilities and trained personnel are important components of a healthy and safe workplace and it reduces the work hazards.
A relatively simple first-aid box should usually include the following items:

  • individually wrapped sterile adhesive dressings
  • bandages (and haemostat bandages, where appropriate)
  • a variety of dressings for wounds
  • sterile sheets for burns
  • sterile eye pads
  • triangular bandages
  • safety pins
  • a pair of scissors
  • antiseptic solution
  • cotton wool balls
  • disposable gloves for dealing with blood spills
  • a card with first-aid instructions.

First-aid boxes should always be easily accessible and should be located in a number of areas, especially where accidents could occur. The boxes should be able to be reached within no more than one to two minutes. They should be made of sturdy materials, and should protect the contents from heat, humidity, dust and abuse. They need to be clearly identified as first-aid material marked with a white or red cross as applicable, on a green background with white borders.

Soap, clean water and disposable drying materials should also be easily available. If possible, there should be a water tap within reach. If that is not available, water should be kept in disposable containers near the first-aid box for eye wash and irrigation.
If poisonings are a possibility, antidotes must be immediately available in a separate container, though it must be made clear that their application is subject to medical instruction. Long lists of antidotes exist, many for specific situations. Only an assessment of the potential risks involved will indicate which antidotes are needed.

The first-aid room should be available and should meet the following requirements:
It should be easily accessible taking into account the possibility that the casualty may arrive on a stretcher or by some other means of transportation, and the need for easy access for removing him or her to an ambulance or other means of transportation to a hospital.

  • It should be large enough to hold a couch with space for people to work around it.
  • It should be kept clean, well ventilated, well lit and maintained in good order.
  • It should be reserved for the administration of first aid.
  • It must be clearly identified as a first-aid facility and appropriately marked (in most countries with a white cross on a green background), and should be under the responsibility of first-aid personnel.
  • There should be clean running water, preferably both hot and cold, soap and a nail brush.
  • There should be towels, pillows and blankets, clean clothing for use by the first-aid personnel, and a refuse container.


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