Every day, thousands of construction site workers go about their daily duties, knowing that they must adhere to very strict guidelines at all times. It only takes a split second of lost concentration, and the results can be fatal. This article takes a closer look at the myriad of hazards that are present in this type of workplace, and the best practices to follow in order to avoid them.
The most serious construction site hazard is presented when working from height, this can be as a result of a fall or perhaps being struck by falling equipment. A simple trip at ground level can easily result in a broken wrist or even work. The very nature of the job means that heavy equipment and a serious amount of debris is prevalent. Construction work is an incredibly demanding and physical job that involves operating heavy machinery and carrying seriously heavy loads. As well as the on-site accidents, there are many injuries that occur from strained muscles and damaged joints. It is near impossible to carry out this nature of work in an organised environment, and the very nature of the beast dictates that the working area is constantly cluttered with potential pitfalls.
Health & Safety
Nowadays, Health & Safety plays a very big part in every type of working environment. As you can imagine, they are very involved in all aspects of construction working details. You just have to look at the safety clothing requirements to see that every conscientious construction company are required to follow their strict standards. So how do so many accidents still happen, despite these guidelines? As well as the ultra-strict safety clothing requirement, Health & Safety have a plethora of onsite practices in place. These include how to react at the scene of an accident and the correct way to carry a heavy load.
A Tidy Workplace
As mentioned previously, it is just not possible to keep a construction site as tidy as an office or even warehouse needs to. But surely there needs to be a certain standard regarding the amount of dangerous materials and debris that seems to be all too prevalent. If you are required to navigate your way along a very narrow elevated walkway, you should ensure that this area is free of any clutter. Surely the risk of fires would be reduced if the trash and potentially flammable waste material were disposed of in a timely fashion? Deep holes in the foundation areas need to be safely covered and clearly signposted. So how do the onsite foremen and managers become enlightened in these areas of concern?
Site Management Safety Training Scheme
In order to reduce the amount of hazards present on construction sites, the site managers need to be sufficiently educated in this matter. Thankfully, there is a scheme that recognises this requirement and it certainly should be part and parcel of all site management training. The Site Management Safety Training Scheme (SMSTS) was developed to empower site managers with the correct awareness and understanding of the correct legal, social and moral responsibilities required to manage construction sites as safely as possible. Since its introduction, the SMSTS training course is now recognised as one of the most prestigious qualifications available for site managers in the construction business to hold. More and more employers are now insisting on this vital credential when interviewing prospective site managers.
Training course venues are springing up all over the UK as a result of heightened Health & Safety awareness. Hopefully, holding this qualification will eventually become a mandatory requirement for site managers everywhere.