Making Safety a Priority

The construction site is one of the most dangerous places anybody can be in. The place is teeming with activity. Several people are doing different things, using various tools in just a single location. All these activities can bring about different accidents such as: falls, electrocutions, scaffolding accidents, accidents caused by falling objects, accidents caused by power tools, heavy equipment accidents, cave-ins or collapse of walls during excavation or trenching, stepladder accidents, accidents involving chemicals, fire, explosions and many more. These accidents often result in deaths or devastating injuries.

What causes these accidents?

  • Falling debris.
  • Equipment that is not maintained and serviced regularly.
  • Carelessness when using cranes, forklifts and dump trucks.
  • Exposed high voltage wires overhead or power lines that are dug up during excavation.
  • Holes on the floor and open sides.
  • Going up and down stairs without rails.
  • Ladders and scaffoldings that are not secured properly.
  • Exposed stakes or rebars.
  • Workers not wearing the proper eye and ear protection required for the job.
  • Power tools not having proper guards in place.
  • No fall protection gear (anchors with an attached lifeline meant to stop a fall) provided for the workers.

 

What measures can be done to prevent these accidents from happening?

  • It is the responsibility of the general contractor and all subcontractors of a construction site to create a safe work site.
  • All heavy equipments and power tools should be constantly maintained and serviced.
  • Contractors and subcontractors should also hire employees that are not just good at what they do but also have a record of being careful in following all job safety rules.
  • Workers should be given proper protective gear such as hard hats, goggles and gloves.
  • But most importantly, all construction workers must have proper training especially those who operate heavy equipment and power tools.

 

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is a federal agency that was created for American workers. Their mission statement is "to assure the safety and health of America's workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach, and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual improvement in workplace safety and health." They have inspectors who go to construction sites (and other workplaces) to ensure that all safety and health concerns of American workers are being met.

 

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