Prevent alcohol related accidents – in and out of work

Prevent alcohol related accidents – in and out of work

While alcohol misuse and abuse poses a challenge to many organisations all year round, the increase in alcohol intake over the festive season is a problem that needs particular attention.

Policy is key

Setting up a sound health and safety policy is a vital step in protecting both the company and employees. If the company adopts a zero-tolerance policy, then it is important that employees are aware of this. They also need to be made aware of the procedures this may involve, and what consequences they will face if they fail to comply.

Detecting the signs

Signs such as bloodshot eyes, frequent absenteeism, weight loss, redness of the nose and cheeks, poor balance and clumsiness could all be indicatory of alcohol abuse. If these signs persist, it is in the best interest of both the employer and employee to take action rather than wait for an incident to occur.

Get the right breathalyser equipment

Not all breathalysers deliver accurate results. Michael Crossland, from PSA Africa, suggests that breath alcohol testing equipment should be fuel-cell based, as this type of equipment won’t show up with any false positives and, therefore, the reliability and accuracy of the readings rendered cannot be doubted.

He states that it’s important to keep this in mind for any Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) cases. He notes that quality breathalysers – such as the Lifeloc range supplied by PSA Africa – are admissible in such cases.

Although breathalysers are known to decrease alcohol-related accidents at work, they can also be used to help prevent accidents after hours. By testing your employees before they leave work, you can help to ensure that any alcohol smuggled in during working hours is detected and, in so doing, contribute to making the roads safer this festive season.

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