Maintaining a safe working environment

construction safety

When we head to work every day, we don’t often think about how to conduct our jobs because it becomes second nature. However, we do need constant reminders that what we’re doing is correct and in line with the company’s expectations.

When it comes to working on commercial and industrial worksites, it is imperative that safety is recognised and observed throughout every project, every day. While it is impractical to provide constant reminders to a labour force of sometimes hundreds of people, there are certain measures you can put in place to maintain a safe on-site working environment.

The correct signage can be the difference between completing a project and a trip to the hospital. By clearly marking different areas or various functions, you eliminate the risk of people losing their way on site and entering into hazardous territory. Worksite signage can include warning workers about a walking edge, dangerous machinery in operation and can serve as a reminder to wear hard hats or goggles.

It is imperative that all workers are kept up to date with the latest regulations by providing regular training. Whether it be in the form of in-house workshops or external courses, you can help improve safety on site by encouraging workers to take part in these extra training classes. The information may seem insignificant but it is absolutely necessary to maintain safe protocol on industrial and commercial worksites.

Protective gear
Relevant checks need to be undertaken to ensure that the entire labour force is wearing the correct protective gear. At a place where welding, drilling and cutting are part of the site’s operation, anyone not wearing the correct gear could be seriously injured. A hard hat is not enough – invest in fire-safe clothing, reflective gear, hardwearing gloves and protective boots.

Clear briefing
Make sure everyone knows what they are doing and where on the site they will be working. Each worker will know their specific function but if the whole team is not briefed correctly on which part of the site they will be occupying and at what time, it could pose a major problem. Having too many people working in one area is asking for trouble – ensure there are dedicated areas according to the job functions and site layout.

Equipment storage
Have you ever tripped over children’s toys at work, or uneven paving in the road? Well, leaving equipment laying around poses the same threat. Whether it is as small as a drill or as big as a jackhammer, all equipment and machinery needs to be stored away correctly. The worksite needs to provide adequate and easily accessible storage units to guarantee open walkways and access points.

Relevant safety equipment
The worksite needs to be decked out with the best possible safety equipment. Non-slip mats, fire extinguishers, reflective signs, temporary bollards and scaffolding markers are all important for commercial and industrial worksites.

Information manual
As an employer, it is your duty to ensure that you have done your part in providing workers with the correct knowledge about working on a specific site. Create an informational booklet that is not too comprehensive but still covers the basics about on-site safety. Before an employee starts working on the site, ensure that they sign the booklet as proof that they have read and understood all the information it contains. This is useful in case of a lawsuit – at least you can show that you have done due diligence.

Contact the experts at SMS Contracting to guarantee a safe worksite.