Whether you have recently started your small construction company or have been well-established for some time, health and safety should always be a top priority. Not only can overlooking health and safety bring about disastrous consequences for you and your team, it could also get you into a lot of legal trouble, including fines that will quickly take a large chunk out of your profits.
We’ve looked at some of the key health and safety considerations that every small construction company should focus on.
1. Personal Protective Equipment
Whether you are working at height or operating potentially dangerous equipment, investing in the right personal protective equipment (PPE) is a must. No matter how experienced somebody is at their job, the right PPE could save their life in the event of an accident or machinery malfunction.
When on site, it’s important to get the basics right and never be seen without your protective boots, hard hat, and high visibility clothing if you are working around vehicles. Work that involves a lot of dust or rubble will require a respirator to be worn, and always wear goggles if you’re carrying out any tasks that pose a risk to your eyes. If you or a member of your team is operating loud machinery, ensure that ear protectors are worn.
2. Fall Protection
Anybody who works at height should always be provided with the correct safety equipment for the job. All it takes is one wrong step, and a worker could be seriously injured or even worse.
Whether you’re working on a residential roof or using cranes or platforms to work at height, make sure that you have a fall protection harness at the very least. Since it’s such a risky job, the more protection that you have, the better. Consider investing in items such as roof anchors, lifelines, and shock absorbing lanyards.
3. Machinery Maintenance
As a construction business owner, it’s your responsibility to ensure that all machinery and equipment used by yourself and your team is regularly maintained and kept in good working order. Any faulty machinery should be reported straight away, kept off-site if possible, and marked as out of use until it is repaired.
Using faulty machinery could cause potential injury or death, so don’t take the risk. At the very least, it could land you in a nasty lawsuit with an employee. Make sure that you’re checking equipment every day to avoid hazardous situations.
4. Keep the Site Tidy
It’s a very simple process, but it’s one of the most important – keeping a tidy site will help to minimize the risk of trips, slips and other preventable injuries. Bear in mind that something as simple as tools that haven’t been cleared away after use could pose a hazard. Make sure that your team is keeping on top of tidying up – not only will it look neater, it’ll be a safer place to work too.
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