Brewery Safety Plans – Train Yourself or Hire Consultant

I have a question regarding brewery safety plans. Is it generally more effective for breweries to research and train employees on brewery safety or to hire a safety consultant to create a site specific safety plan? Where do insurance providers fit into this equation?

The Safety Exchange Says: There is not one single training course that will cover all components that go into developing a comprehensive brewery safety plan (AKA brewery safety management system). Unless you already have a strong safety background, i.e., you know the regulations, can perform a hazard assessment, and know strategies for minimizing risk, it may be best to hire a safety consultant.

A qualified safety consultant will typically have the knowledge and experience to identify most industrial hazards, large or small, at your brewery, provide you with recommendations for controlling the hazards, and can assist you in developing a site-specific safety plan.

Keep in mind that once the framework for a site-specific safety plan has been set, your work will not end there. Implementation of your site-specific safety plan is where research and training are critical. Your brewery safety plan may include an emergency evacuation plan, confined space protocol and chemical safety plan. Your staff must be trained in all three. If a manager is trained in compliant confined space entry, air monitoring, and rescue, then an internal written program and training are likely sufficient; if brewery employees have entered confined spaces but have no knowledge of the actual OSHA regulations, you will want to have professional training.

Your insurance company or workman’s compensation provider will usually provide a comprehensive safety consultation through a “risk management services” team. Depending on your policy, this may be included in your premiums and therefore require no extra cost to you. For program-specific and training services (such as confined space or chemical safety), your insurance company may not provide these services may and refer you to private safety consultants or local OSHA consultation office.