4 Top Safety Risks On A Construction Site

Because workers on a construction site are most at risk for injuries and fatalities that can occur onsite, they are in the unique position to recognize the factors that may endanger their health and safety or the health and safety of others. Workers, then, are the first line of defense against accidents. Having employees keep a watchful eye and reporting risks they see on the worksite enables everyone to work in a safer environment. Here are four of the top things workers can look for when assessing onsite safety:

Electrical Risks: Electrocution is one of the leading causes of injury and death in construction, earning it a place as one of the “Fatal Four”. Machinery and/or workers coming in contact with live wires can result in electrocution so it is important to locate any overhead power lines and/or cables and ensure that equipment and workers are at an appropriate distance. Be sure only qualified electricians carry out electrical work that may be required on site.

Equipment Injuries: From forklifts to cranes and all machinery in between, automated equipment can cause accidents and injuries if not properly used. Be sure to check equipment prior to use to ensure it is in proper working condition. Never allow someone who is not properly trained in the use and maintenance of equipment to operate it.  

Noise Level: Noise not only interferes with communication between workers which can result in accidents and injuries, but excessive repetitive noise can also cause long-term hearing loss. It’s important to be aware of noise levels at a work site and use the appropriate hearing protection for the job. NIOSH provides a free Sound Level Meter App which can be accessed here: https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/noise/app.html.

Fall Risks: Construction sites are virtual obstacle courses — with holes in the ground and machinery and materials strewn on it, it is no surprise that slips, trips and falls are rife onsite. But they can be prevented. Assess high traffic areas and keep them free from materials and other fall hazards. Establishing a no-running policy and wearing proper footwear that has good traction can go a long way in avoiding mishaps as well.