5 Tips for Best Practices Safety Inspections in Chemical Facilities


Safety inspection reports weave a story about a chemical facility and establish a baseline for the state of the inventory. By leveraging cloud-based technology and hand-held devices, safety inspectors and EHS managers could track every deficiency from start to finish. Safety inspections are a win-win practice to lower liability and improve safety. ChemSW shares five tips for successful safety inspections in our best practices webinar.


Tip #1 Eliminate Duplicate Transcription Tasks

The ChemSW team has the privilege of traveling to chemical facilities large and small around the world. On our journeys, we are often surprised how many safety inspections are still recorded on paper spreadsheets. We’ve seen workflows where the inspector, or even an assistant, transcribes the findings into a report back at the office and sends out a physical report. This takes up extra time and leaves the door open to transcription errors. It’s also difficult to track all of the corrective actions, so later errors are found that were never addressed.

Luckily, there is a 21st century solution to the problem of the duplicate transcription task. Safety inspectors can record all of their findings one time in the field using their own hand hand-held device and an app connected to safety software. No training necessary on the user’s own device and the database populates in real-time.


Tip #2 Manage Inspections and Corrective Actions More Efficiently

With cloud-based data, safety officers can access safety inspection results anywhere, even while sipping a cappuccino at a coffee shop. Instant email notifications after a safety inspection can tell you whether to rush back to the lab or finish your coffee before addressing a deficiency. In research facilities, real-time safety inspection data will save lives, make for better compliance and reduce liability. That has a pleasant ring to it!


Tip #3 Reduce Time Planning and Scheduling Safety Inspections

We commiserate with safety officers who spend so much time comparing calendars and scheduling safety inspections. We want them to use an electronic solution that tracks the inspection deadlines and schedules visits for you. Computers can do all that number crunching and even send emails to remind inspectors and send a heads up to departments to expect a visit. I bet you could think of other safety initiatives that could use more of your time if you reduce the time spent scheduling inspections.


Tip #4 Simplify Inspection Communications

With automation software, safety inspection notifications can zip out as soon as the inspection is complete. I’m sure that EHS professionals and department heads may be interested to know when corrective actions are finished, or oh no! not finished after a certain time. This also gives us a digital record of every action so that nothing falls through the cracks.


Tip #5 Tracking Safety Inspections & Corrective Actions

Safety programs grow and thrive on big data. Our final tip for successful safety inspections is to record all inspections in a single database in the cloud. We can mine said database for trends in the frequency and types of safety deficiencies. If we dig a little deeper, we can look for the cause of repeat deficiencies and try to prevent them.

We hope you enjoyed these safety inspection tips. Here is the helpful ChemSW best-practices webinar in its entirety:




ChemSW loves lab safety, and we offer several software solutions for chemical inventory management. In fact, this week we are showcasing both CISPro™ and Safety Inspection Live™ at the CSHEMA 2013 campus safety conference in Orlando. Please visit our site to learn more about our award-winning safety inspection products.

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