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Rushing Can Hurt

by Dr. Isabel Perry, “The Safety Doctor”


(391 words)

We’ve all been in a situation at one time or another where we were in a hurry, didn’t pay close attention to what we were doing, and ended up with an injury.  Hurrying on the job can cause both minor accidents and life-threatening injuries.  You may hurry dozens of times without incident, until finally it happens – an accident.  The old adage, “Haste makes waste,” is all too true.


Have you done any of these?

¨      Used the wrong ladder because the one you needed wasn’t close by?

¨      Climbed a ladder with tools stuck in your pockets or in your hand because you didn’t have a tool belt?

¨      Reached a little further on the ladder rather than get down and move it?

¨      Climbed up the side of a bin or shelving unit instead of getting a ladder?

¨      Not worn safety glasses because the job would only take a few minutes?

¨      Used a dull saw blade for just one more cut?

¨      Removed a guard to repair your machine, and not gotten around to putting it back?

¨      Cut the grounding prong off a three-way ground wire plug because you didn’t have an adapter?

¨      Used a wrench instead of a hammer because your toolbox was not close?

¨      Not unplugged a power tool before making adjustments, because you’d only have to plug it in again – or the plug was a little distance away?

¨      Given a forklift truck just as little more “pedal” so you could get one more load in before lunch?

¨      Not slowed down at a blind corner because you never saw anyone there before?


I’m sure you can come up with a dozen more examples of shortcuts you’ve taken, or seen co-workers take, to get the job done more quickly.  Sometimes nothing happens, sometimes there are near misses, until finally there is a real accident and you, or someone you work or live with, gets hurt.  Yes, someone you live with; what we do at work carries over into what we do at home.  Our children follow our example.  If we take shortcuts, they will do the same thing, assuming it’s all right because they saw us do it. 


Practice safety everywhere. You can never be too careful.  The example you set may save your life, or the life of someone you love.


Dr. Isabel Perry is an internationally-known safety expert, motivational speaker, author and safety educator.  Based in Orlando, Florida, she can be reached at 407-291-1209 or via e-mail at [email protected]