A Brief Guide to Construction Site Safety
According to the OSHA website, for the approximately 6.5 million people working at 252,000 construction sites across America on an average day, the rate of injury is higher than the national average for all industries. You are more likely to be injured in construction than in any other line of work in the country, and that’s where construction site safety comes in. It is critical in such a situation to dedicate considerable attention to on-site safety training to maintain a safe working environment. We’ve compiled a few construction site safety tips that will help to make your construction site a safer place to work.
Secure Your Scaffolding
Scaffolding is at the top spot in OSHA’s ten most frequently cited injury situations. An average of 50 people die per year from falling off of scaffolding. These unfortunate accidents can be mitigated to a great extent with a few simple steps.
- Secure your scaffolding. Make sure it’s sound, rigid and sufficient to carry its own weight plus four times the maximum intended load.
- Be sure to equip guardrails, midrails and toeboards on your scaffolding.
- Inspect your scaffolding before each shift. If anything is damaged or compromised, have a competent person replace it.
- Keep your scaffolding a safe distance from any electrical lines
- Complete proper safety training
Falls account for the greatest number of fatalities in the construction industry, from scaffolding or otherwise. Every precaution should be taken to ensure that your workers are adequately protected from falls.
- Erect guardrails. This simple step can make all the difference. If a working location is high enough to cause fall injuries, erect guardrails.
- Consider making use of a safety net system or body harness where appropriate
Take Care on Ascent
Ladders and stairways are a common source of injuries and fatalities among construction workings. OSHA estimates that an average of around 25,000 injuries every year occur on ladders and stairwells.
- Make sure ladders and stairways are clear of objects and materials
- Always use the correct ladder for the job. That includes ensuring the ladder being used is long enough. If it’s not, get another. Don’t “make it work.”
- Always be aware of and avoid electrical lines
- Ensure that the treads on steps and ladders are in good condition and cover the entire stepping surface
Wear Your Gear
Head protection, eye protection, face shields, gloves: simple implements that go a long way toward making sure that injuries are avoided. These items should be readily available for all personnel exposed to situations in which they might be necessary.
- Ensure boots are both slip-resistant and puncture-resistant.
- If you’re working around heavy equipment or moving heavy objects, consider wearing safety-toed footwear to prevent crushed toes.
- Make sure to select the right gloves for the job, insulated gloves for electrical work, for instance.
- Hardhats are always a good idea on any construction site. Make sure hardhats are free from dents or cracks and fit properly
Following these simple on-site safety training tips will go a long way toward ensuring construction site safety. This benefits you the employer as you have fewer lost man-hours due to worker injury, and it benefits your workforce by providing a safer, more conscientious work environment. Contact Safety Experts for a consultation and complete assessment of your operating environment.