Due to the nature of work, the construction industry is considered dangerous. Aside from the ethical concerns to keep the workers injury-free, project managers are responsible for ensuring job site safety.
Health and safety should be a top priority before any construction project, knowing the dangers lurking around construction sites.
Besides keeping the workers safe on the construction sites, public safety is equally important. Most construction sites are located in a populated locality, putting the public in direct line of injuries.
Working in a safe environment saves lives and protects employers from lawsuits and worker’s compensation claims.
As per the occupational health and safety act, workers have a right to a safe workplace even if no accidents occur. Otherwise, an unsafe work environment leads to fines and penalties.
As established already how construction sites pose a threat to the safety of workers, understanding the associated risks helps establish measurements for a secure workspace.
Occupational hazards are common due to the movement of objects, falling, tripping, or working near machinery.
Workers stepping foot onto the construction site should be aware of the workplace safety hazards and how to prevent them.
Besides knowledge, there are practical steps to ensure the safety of workers on the construction site.
Mentioned below are ways to ensure construction site safety.
1. Safety Glasses
Since construction work comes with plenty of hazards since a regular pair of glasses isn’t safe, workers need prescription safety glasses to prevent foreign objects and debris from obscuring their vision or damaging their eyes.
If your job requires you to spend time outdoors, there is a high risk of extensive UV light exposure as well. Safety glasses ensure your eyes will get the best protection from ultraviolet rays.
Safety goggles are a practical alternative to regular glasses that have performed a similar role.
The primary reason to wear safety glasses is to protect your eyes, so you should look for one with a high impact resistance standard to protect your eyes during all working conditions.
Although you learn a lot during work, safety is one thing that employees should remember before entering the construction site.
Often, workers neglect their surroundings, which leads to a significant risk of onsite injuries.
Keeping in view the hazards, preparing your staff with adequate training reduces any risk on the construction site.
Lack of health and safety training affects the employees and poses a legal threat to the construction companies. That is why managers must invest in providing training to the employees when they’re hired.
In fact, training sessions allow workers to be aware of the safety measures in the case of an incident. Rather than learning the safety rules only, what matters most is practically enforcing these rules on the working field.
3. Proper Equipment
Undoubtedly, construction workers equipped with improper equipment will make fatal mistakes.
In addition to maintaining materials and operating heavy machinery, construction companies must ensure the equipment is well-suited to the task on hand.
The equipment provided should be specifically designed to help workers against safety risks on the job site.
Using proper equipment prevents accidents that frequently occur throughout the year. Since it all comes down to choosing to protect yourself, there are several types of protective gear available to ensure the safety of workers.
Hard hats are designed for head protection against falling objects like a piece of equipment or sharp material. Some of the protective headgear is equipped with face shields or earmuffs for extra protection.
Health concerns that workers commonly experience are related to respiratory issues. Protective respiratory equipment protects the lungs from dust, fumes, and other hazardous contaminants.
Accidents at the construction site are likely to occur when workers are unaware of their surroundings.
However, establishing communication in the workplace improves productivity and enables employees to be conscious of their surroundings.
We know that good communication improves several aspects of the work environment, like teamwork and a better understanding of the tasks on hand; however, managers must improve the communication gap, which is the cause of unexpected injuries on the construction site.
So, how can workers and managers develop effective communication? The first line of action is to talk to the staff about their responsibilities and make sure everybody is fully aware of the construction site’s safety protocols.
Aside from providing health and safety training, conversations around safety should be encouraged to ensure safe behavior during work.
The benefit of communicating with employees is that it gives them a chance to voice their suggestions for further improvement in safety management.
The key to allowing your words to reach far ahead is to create a dialogue that everyone understands.
5. Worksite Evaluation
As a daily morning ritual, regularly evaluating the worksite is essential to identify any potential hazards and find the solution to eliminate or minimize them for optimizing workplace safety.
Common hazards every worker may encounter on the construction site include electrocution or falls. Before allowing any employee to commence their work, thoroughly go through construction equipment, tools, or machinery to ensure they do not have any faults.
Having construction signs in place ensures the company abides with the workplace occupational health and safety requirements. These signs also benefit workers in understanding the protocols clearly.
Construction work is one of the most dangerous professions in the world. While employers have to mitigate safety hazards to workers, learning about the precautions is the duty of employees.
The construction industry leaders must strive to ensure the safety of every worker for ethical and economic reasons.
Though there is a high risk of working in the construction sector, workers often unknowingly put everyone else in danger due to a lack of knowledge.
Workers who are vigilant during working hours can avoid outcomes that could change the course of their life.
Managers and employees should know about the risk associated with construction-related work and ensure a safe work environment.