Safety Measures That Construction Workers Must Take
March 26 2018
A construction site can be a very dangerous place to work if you are not careful. You should always protect your safety while working.
CHECK YOUR WORK SPACES
Scaffolds are important equipment in most construction areas and unfortunately are also a source of a high number of injuries. If you are going to work on them, you must ensure their safety in the first place. Check first with your supervisor or find out if the scaffold has been inspected by a professional or competent person. Never work on an incomplete scaffold that does not have a strong platform or base.
Ladders are other essential tools in a construction area, and they also come with a high potential for danger. Check the ladder thoroughly before using it. If you find a loose part of the ladder, do not use it. A ladder must have adequate strength and a height that will always keep it at least one metre above the landing. All steps or slabs of the ladder must be well secured. The top and bottom ends of the ladder must be attached or secured properly. If not, make sure someone is keeping it safe manually to prevent it from falling from a height. The New York Labor Law protects construction workers and places responsibility on owners and contractors under certain circumstances where workers are exposed to risks related to height. According to Labor Law 240 (1), known as the Scaffold Act, contractors and owners must provide certain safety devices, including scaffolds, hoists and ladders, to protect workers. Claims may arise from an alleged defect or hazardous condition in the facilities or the means and methods by which the work was performed. An owner or contractor is generally not responsible for an injury arising out of the contractor’s means and methods if the owner or general contractor does not have supervisory control over the operation. However, if the damage is caused by a defect or dangerous condition on the facility, the owner or contractor is liable if he creates the condition or has actual or constructive notice of it.
BE CAREFUL WITH ELECTRICITY AND EQUIPMENT.
The construction work requires a large number of electrical installations, most of which involve electricity and counterweights. When working with this type of equipment, you should be very careful not to wear the machine down and you should also follow the safety precautions stated for the equipment. If you are using plugged-in portable devices, such as grinders and drills, you should always check that the cables are protected, that the metal cover is grounded and that the power supply is equipped with a ground leakage circuit breaker. Never allow power tools to come into contact with water. Never stand or work immediately under a heavy suspended load. And always check that it does not exceed the permitted load levels. You will need proper training before operating any equipment, including a material hoist and crane. Ensure that the hoist is operating only after the dampers are properly closed. Know the working load limits of a hoist and never exceed those limits. Most importantly, when using material elevators, make sure that the communication between you and the operator is clearly understood. Any error here can cause a serious accident on the site.
Employers are supposed to provide their workers with adequate protective clothing and equipment. If you as a worker do not have them, demand them from your employer and use them correctly. Well-equipped helmets and goggles are a necessity. Earplugs or sleeves should be worn to work in noisy areas and protective gloves should be worn when toxic chemicals are involved. Non-slip shoes and protective clothing are necessary for those working in toxic or dusty environments. Be sure to use them. Fall harnesses are very important for every construction worker. Make sure your harness is sturdy and secured to a strong anchor point when working at heights.
In places where there is a lot of movement of heavy vehicles, workers should wear highly visible clothing so that they can be easily located and seen. Because construction workers have to work outdoors, regardless of weather conditions, they must also have some weather protection equipment and clothing.
If you are injured in a workplace, contact an experienced attorney. We are always available to discuss your case if you are an injured construction worker.