Accidents on construction sites not atypical. Still, they are also entirely avoidable. Construction sites contain various safety hazards. These hazards can cause severe injuries to on-site personnel, and in some cases, can even cause death.
Fortunately, the construction industry is not what it used to be a decade ago. Technology has made construction sites more innovative, more adaptive, and safer than ever before. The utilization of protective gears and tools has also helped to minimize accidents. Construction is not a type of work where you can rush, it has to be done safely and properly. Nowadays, contractors hire heavy equipment like cranes, bulldozers, etc. for construction sites. But before you rent out machinery, schedule a consultation with a crane rental company.
Hold regular safety meetings
As a construction project progresses, various health hazards will surface depending on the stage of the work. It would be best to brief your employees about all the different safety measures for every construction project/site. Every project manager and contractor’s job is to ensure that everyone on the construction site knows about the changing regulations and follows proper safety instructions.
Holding regular safety meetings will allow you to ensure that everyone on the construction site remains up-to-date with safety protocols. These regular safety meetings should also reiterate proper risk assessment and health and safety standards.
Furthermore, project managers and contractors can also get additional education to ensure they’re well-equipped with the proper knowledge on occupational hazards. Fortunately, technology makes this process extremely straightforward, and they can acquire a bachelor’s degree in occupational health and safety online right from the comfort of their office or home. Doing so will allow them to stay updated with the latest safety procedures and protocols to keep themselves and everyone else safe from on-site injuries and hazards.
Provide proper safety gear
To protect construction site workers from injury and health hazards, they need proper safety gear at all times. Some essential safety gear and equipment include hearing protection, harnesses, goggles, and hardhats. Masks, heavy-duty gloves, and slip-resistant boots are also standard safety gear employees need to wear whenever they work at a construction site. While handling toxic chemicals, it is necessary to provide protecting overalls and breathing masks as well.
Use signage to warn workers of danger
Project managers and contractors need to mark high voltage wires and areas to avoid any instances of accidental electrocution. Suppose employees need to work in such areas of the construction site. In that case, the power supply should remain switched off until they finish.
Cordon off high-risk areas with ropes and pylons to ensure that construction site workers don’t accidentally move into areas with dangerous hazards such as falling debris. Signs such as ‘Health Hazard’ or ‘Danger’ are essential to ensure the safety of everybody on the construction site.
Provide regular breaks
Construction site workers are human beings and can experience tiredness and fatigue just like everybody else. Project managers and contractors must provide the labor with regular breaks- be it a short 15-minute lunch break or a long one-hour break to allow them to stretch their legs and catch their breath. Protective equipment isn’t all that easy to wear, and they need to let their body rest for a while.
Some workers might want to work during these break periods. However, it is crucial to encourage them to take some time off and rehydrate. Doing so will drastically reduce fatigue, lowering the risk of accidents and hazards caused by poor body coordination and lack of mental sharpness.
Conduct timely equipment maintenance
The type of equipment project managers and contractors use in construction projects today supersedes everything we ever saw in the past. However, more than 75 percent of injuries occurring at construction sites are due to failed heavy machinery such as cranes and trucks. Therefore, routine maintenance of machinery and equipment is necessary at all costs to prevent major construction accidents.
Through regular and thorough heavy machinery and equipment maintenance, project managers and contractors can drastically lower construction site hazards and injuries. Plus, efficiently operating equipment means they’ll be able to complete their projects well before the completion deadlines. Workers can also use the downtime due to maintenance to rejuvenate.
Inspect the construction site
Before any construction project starts, the construction site requires inspection for any potential and unusual health and safety hazards. Recognizing such threats early on will ensure that managers and contractors create a safety plan accordingly. A thorough inspection or a job hazard analysis can sometimes make a huge difference in avoiding occupational hazards and saving countless lives.
Contractors and project managers need to create a list of preventative measures for every type of potential health and safety hazard. The job hazards analysis and the accompanying safety plan should always be within arm’s reach of every construction site worker. It will allow them to remain vigilant of possible construction site hazards and ensure that they take the necessary steps to avoid on-site injuries.
Most of the tips mentioned above require a great deal of repetition, training, and encouragement to ensure that all construction site workers remain safe and secure. Also, consistently following safety measures and protocols will help create a culture of safety and teamwork among all employees. After all, if construction site workers aren’t safe, they probably won’t perform their duties with 100 percent efficiency.