Careful observation of employee behavior is an essential part of any behavior-based safety program. Both supervisors and employees should be empowered to report at-risk behavior or unsafe working environments. Behavior-based safety checklists make reporting an easy process, especially when combined with workplace management software.

Types of Behavior-Based Safety Checklists

A behavior-based safety checklist may focus on a general aspect of workplace safety, or zero in on a specific task. Task-specific checklists might focus on lockout/tagout procedures, equipment operation, safe positioning of scaffolding, or any other work-related task where risky behavior could result in an accident or injury. 

General behavior-based safety checklists cover broad categories of work-related behavior, such as ergonomics, personal protective equipment use, housekeeping, and tool use. These checklists may be used in a wide variety of work settings, from the company’s administrative office to the factory floor.

Using a Behavior-Based Safety Checklist

Filling out a behavior-based safety checklist is fairly straightforward. Note down whether the subject being evaluated is safe or not, including the condition of any equipment used and whether or not follow up is needed to address the behavior. Tally up the number of check marks in each column (safe, not safe, etc.) at the bottom.

Employees can get nervous when a supervisor or EHS professional shows up with a checklist. Take the time to introduce yourself first, and ask the employee to explain the job being performed. Ask questions to learn more about at-risk barriers, encouraging the employee to define any hazards associated with the task at hand, and any precautions that need to be taken to ensure safety.

Below are some general behavior-based safety checklists for common workplace situations, including the use of ergonomics, PPE use, housekeeping, and policies and procedures. 

Behavior-Based Safety Checklists

Ergonomics Topic Safe Act Unsafe Act Safe Condition Unsafe Condition Is Follow-up Needed? Back           Neck           Wrist           Chair/Seat Position           Driving Position           Safe Lifting Techniques           Safe Pulling Techniques           Safe Carrying Techniques           Total:           Comments:

Eyes on Path/Work Topic Safe Act Unsafe Act Safe Condition Unsafe Condition Is Follow-up Needed? Eyes Focused on Direction of Travel           Employee Focused on Task           3-Point Contact When Using Ladders           Total:           Comments:

Housekeeping Topic Safe Act Unsafe Act Safe Condition Unsafe Condition Is Follow-up Needed? Cleanliness           Clear Electrical Panels           Clear Exists, Walkways, and Asiles           Control of Combustible dust/debris           Falling Object Hazards           Proper Electrical Cord Storage           Proper Lighting           Properly Positioned Warning Signs / Safety Posters           Proper Storage of Hoses           Workplace Free of Clutter           Workplace Free of Leaks and Spills           Workplace Free of Tripping Hazards           Total:           Comments:

Personal Protective Equipment  Topic Safe Act Unsafe Act Safe Condition Unsafe Condition Is Follow-up Needed? PPE Condition           Eye Protection           Head Protection           Torso Protection           Respiratory Protection           Safety Shoes           Hot Work/Welding PPE           Fall Protection           Employee Vests           Non-Employee Vests           Total:           Comments

Tools and Equipment Behavior-Based Safety Checklist	 Topic Safe Act Unsafe Act Safe Condition Unsafe Condition Is Follow-up Needed? Tool Condition           Equipment Condition           First-Aid Kits           Lighting           Equipment Misuse           Proper Location/ Storage of Tools/  Equipment           Proper Electrical Grounding           Safety Guards in Place           Total:           Comments:

Policies and Procedures Topic Safe Act Unsafe Act Safe Condition Unsafe Condition Is Follow-up Needed? Procedures Not Followed           Procedures Not Understood           Other (Specify)           Total:           Comments:

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