Having the Right Safety Attitude

December 15, 2023

Here are some key points.

  • Having a good safety attitude means following all of our safety rules.
  • Learn to take responsibility for your own safety.
  • Don’t be in too big of a hurry to get the job done.

Thinking about safety

  • How often do you think about safety on the job?
  • If your answer is “not very much” or “only when a co-worker gets hurt,” then it’s important to develop a new safety attitude.
  • Having a good safety attitude means:
  • doing the best job you can – not the fastest job you can
  • being careful on the job, and not engaging in horseplay
  • staying focused on the task you’re performing
  • being on the lookout for potential hazards, and reporting them to your supervisor as soon as possible
  • taking precautions against hazards, such as using the personal protective equipment (PPE) we provide
  • following all of our safety rules, and paying close attention to warning signs
  • thinking about the safety of your co-workers, as well as yourself
  • taking responsibility for your own safety – including immediately reporting any injuries

Common distractions

  • There are many reasons why employees get distracted from the tasks they are performing, and wind up getting hurt. Some of the common distractions to watch out for are:
  • getting too little sleep
  • coming to work ill
  • coming to work under the influence of alcohol or other drugs
  • having your mind on something else
  • being in too big of a hurry
  • being angry or upset
  • not paying close attention to what you’re doing
  • failing to check for nearby hazards
  • talking with a co-worker, instead of concentrating on the task at hand

Poor safety attitudes

  • There are a number of examples of poor safety attitudes. Here are a few to think about. If any of these sound like you, it’s not too late to change:
  • “I’m going to do things my way. I know what I’m doing.”
  • “I’ve always done it this way, and I haven’t been hurt before.”
  • “I could do this job in my sleep.”
  • “I don’t have time to think about safety. I need to get this job done right now.”
  • “I know a shortcut that will help me get done quicker.”
  • “These safety rules aren’t important. They certainly don’t apply to me.”
  • “This job is simple.”
  • “I can figure this out myself. I don’t need any help.

Some important tips

  • If you’re new to a job, be sure to get the appropriate training. Having a good safety attitude includes being willing to listen and learn, and not think you know it all.
  • Always put safety first. That includes putting it ahead of rushing to get the job done.
  • Dress properly for the job. Use PPE when required, and wear clothing that won’t get caught in moving machinery. Follow our other safety rules regarding how to dress on the job. See your supervisor if you have any questions.
  • Attend all of our safety meetings and safety training sessions. Listen and participate. Ask questions about anything you don’t understand.
  • Think about the result of not having a good safety attitude. If it results in a serious injury, how will your family members feel? How will you feel if you’re permanently disabled, and not able to hold a job again? What if you were killed on the job – who would support your family? If you have children, how would this affect them?

Safety Attitude Do’s and Don’ts


  • Think about safety ALL the time.
  • Put safety ahead of rushing to get the job done.
  • Immediately report any injuries.


  • Take shortcuts or engage in horseplay.
  • Have the attitude that you never need any help.
  • Fail to pay close attention to the task at hand.
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