Working on a construction site is perhaps one of the most hazardous places to be. You’re likely to use plant hire equipment that could be technically challenging to use and other equipment that needs to be used correctly to minimise issues. Here you’ll find our top tips for working on a in the safest ways possible, while looking out for yourself and your co-workers.
1. Understand the importance of fall protection equipment
Slips, trips, and falls are the biggest cause of injury in the construction industry. More specifically, falling from scaffoldings that are at height or slipping from a risky section of the elevated stories in a building which is being worked on, is the number one cause of fatalities in this industry. Without the use of equipment such as safety nets, guardrails, or other fall prevention systems and covers, the risk of injury in construction work is much higher than it should be.
2. Always wear the appropriate clothing
It may seem obvious to every construction worker out there but wearing the appropriate personal protection equipment and clothing while you’re working is one of the best ways to stay safe while you’re doing your job. Many incidents on construction sites occur due to the lack of protective clothing and equipment worn by workers. What you wear while you’re working is going to act as the biggest barrier between you and a possible injury that you could sustain while working.
Take, for example, safety boots that have steel cap toes. Without these, if you or someone else were to drop something heavy on your foot, you’d likely break your toes. Of course, there are other vital pieces of protective clothing and equipment you should also be wearing, such as high visibility clothing, googles, and even respiratory masks.
3. Safe load handling
Whenever you are handling a load at work, whether it’s a box of paperwork or something much heavier like a sack of bricks, you need to properly lift the load in the correct way to prevent any undue injuries. When lifting heavy objects, you should always bend your knees, and avoiding twisting your body from side to side. When lifting, ensure that one leg is positioned in front of the other to give you a more grounded surface area to balance yourself on.
4. Keep your worksite tidy
Accidents and injuries can occur at any time, however they can be prevented if the area you are working in is kept as tidy as possible. As busy as construction work is, it’s no excuse to leave equipment or materials lying around instead of being properly disposed of or stored away. Ensure any wires, tools and plant hire equipment are moved out of the work area when they are not in use. This not only provides yourself but other workers with a clear working space to complete tasks.
5. Ensure all staff are trained and safe to work at height
It is crucial that all workers that are working on any construction job are certified as skilled and experienced professionals who are physically able to work. These checks should occur well before any worker starts working at height.