Companies in Singapore need to focus more on improving their safety policies for machinery, which can be as simple as using a portable printer to label equipment correctly.
Employers in the manufacturing, construction, and marine sectors should pay more attention to this since the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has cracked down on poor safety measures among nearly 280 companies.
MOM officials believe that any accident is preventable if the right security measures are in place. Those found to have violated safety regulations received a stop-work order and $91,000 of penalties.
A “lack of machine guarding” served as one reason for MOM’s issuance of six stop-work orders, following an evaluation of 350 companies between April and May.
During the same period, 78 companies received composition fines for not having proper maintenance and repair procedures, aside from lacking machine safety assessments. In the coming months, the MOM plans to heighten its efforts by conducting safety inspections for more companies.
MOM has completed at least 330 out of the planned 500 safety inspections between May and July, but it plans to increase that number with 250 additional checks. The ministry broadened its scope beyond land-based workers, as it included commercial diver safety to its list.
Workers in this industry face a higher level of risk due to the unfamiliar environment underwater. The fatality rate in the sector with just 200 workers can have a significant impact. Hence MOM believes that there should be a specific policy for worker safety.
By August, the ministry expects to enumerate its concerns after receiving feedback from the commercial diving industry.
The Work Safety and Health Act in Singapore ensures that every employer in any industry implements strict safety standards. By maintaining compliance, companies can avoid costly penalties of up to $500,000 and contribute to a safer workplace environment.