Elements to Add to a Construction Safety Plan
The construction industry has the third highest fatality rate of any industry, so having a good safety plan is highly valuable for organizations. Workers and their families are right to be concerned about the safety of their loved ones in this profession. Because of this, construction professionals seek out positions with affordable life insurance options, company-wide safety plans, and specialized equipment safety training.
A well-designed safety plan for construction is crucial to protect workers and members of the community while a construction project is in progress. When a safety plan is established from the outset, employers can more effectively identify hazards and take preventative measures from the get-go.
These are a few critical elements to add to a construction safety plan:
Personal protective equipment
List any personal protective equipment (PPE) that workers should use while on the job site. Hard hats, protective eyewear, facemasks, earplugs, gloves, and steel toe boots are all examples of PPE that are commonly found at a construction site.
Construction site rules and regulations
Ensure a hazard-free workplace by including a list of rules to address safety issues. For example, while OSHA doesn’t specifically regulate smoking on construction sites, a construction company may limit smoking to designated areas as a precaution.
List employee roles and expectations
While it may not seem that important at first, having a list of on-site personnel can come in handy during an emergency. Workers need to have a clear understanding of their role in the project to be effective without compromising the safety of themselves and others.
Operating procedures and safety precautions
One effective way to manage risk on construction sites is to provide written operating procedures that workers can refer to on the job. It’s also good to post safety precautions and warning signage in areas with hazardous materials or where accidents could occur.
Consider extreme weather conditions
Some construction projects last for months or even years. Projects that span numerous seasons are likely to experience different weather conditions. Your safety manual should note whether or not workers can safely operate specific equipment during situations such as high winds or a rainstorm. Include considerations for extreme weather emergencies such as tornadoes, earthquakes, or flooding.
Emergency contact information
In an emergency, there is no time to waste. An easy-to-locate list of contacts in case of emergency can lead to a faster response and improve safety outcomes. Keep this emergency contact list in more than one location and make sure it is accessible to all workers, contractors, and other construction personnel.
Reporting instructions and procedures
An often forgotten section of a good site-specific safety plan addresses how to report accidents and what to do in the event of a safety incident. OSHA has strict requirements for documenting accidents and injuries, including detailed instructions for managers and employees to follow in your plan.