A Guide to Construction Worker Health & Safety
By Space Coast Daily // May 31, 2021
Health and safety need to be a priority in all industries, but particularly in construction where there are many hazards and workers will be carrying out dangerous tasks.
Health and safety is the most important consideration before any construction job goes underway and this should ensure the project is carried out safely and staff has peace of mind knowing measures have been taken.
A Hazardous Industry
Statistics show that 3% of all construction workers sustain a work-related injury and sadly there were 40 reported fatalities in 2019/20 and often these are avoidable. Obviously, you will want your workers to avoid injury and feel safe while working, plus an injury could result in costly downtime, erode trust and could even result in a lawsuit as it is the employer that is responsible for providing a safe work environment for staff in all industries.
So, how can you prioritize health and safety in construction? A risk assessment needs to be carried out before every project to identify the risks and hazards and then steps can be taken to remove or mitigate these risks. You also need to ensure that staff are properly trained, including refresher sessions so that health and safety is at the forefront of everyone’s mind.
Safety Clothing & Equipment
You also need to make sure that you are supplying high-quality safety clothing and equipment and enough for all workers. This should include high vis jackets, worker clothing, hardhats, goggles, steel toe capped shoes and ear plugs. You must make sure that staff are always wearing this equipment when required too as this can be an issue and could lead to serious injury.
Keep a Tidy Site
Many accidents happen onsite due to untidy and chaotic work sites – HSE reported that slips and trips accounted for 30% of specified major injuries on construction sites from 2016/17 to 2018/19 and these could usually be prevented by keeping the site tidy and organized. You need to encourage staff to tidy up after themselves during their shift paying extra focus on access and escape routes.
Communication is key when it comes to safety and you need to make sure that staff members report any dangers, injuries or near misses no matter how big or small. You can make this easier by putting a reporting procedure in place that can make it quick and easy for staff to bring your attention to potential issues.
Health and safety must be a priority when it comes to construction in order to protect staff, prevent downtime and provide a safe environment for your team.