10 Pieces of Construction Safety Equipment To Help You Build A Safe Workspace
563,600 Australian workers experienced injuries on the job in 2018. That’s why construction site safety should be the first priority of every construction team.
Just like other industries, construction comes with its own set of hazards. Without the proper construction safety equipment, the lives of construction workers get put at risk.
Having safety protocols is a must for construction companies. Here is a construction safety equipment list that every construction worker should have access to:
People who visit construction sites often think that they can get away without wearing a hardhat. Since they aren’t actually working, they don’t have to wear head protection, right? Wrong.
Projects that involve heights always pose the threat of falling objects. Any worker or visitor who doesn’t have a hardhat can suffer serious head injuries from falling objects.
Hardhats have special materials to protect the head. They’re made of high-density polyethylene, and sometimes come equipped with noise-canceling features, face shields, and even a radio.
2. Foot Protection
Falls made up 14% of workplace fatalities in 2016. Unfortunately, many fatal falls occur due to tripping or slipping. Unsafe scaffolding or ladders can make the situation even more hazardous.
Proper footwear is one of the most essential safety products in preventing falls. Construction workers should wear shoes that are both slip-proof and resistant to punctures.
Steel-toed boots can also come in handy for protecting a worker’s feet. Falling objects always have the risk of injuring a worker’s feet, resulting in broken bones and the inability to walk.
Cuts, burns, and punctures are the most common hand injuries among construction workers. With the right construction safety gear, workers won’t have to be sent to the emergency room with debilitating hand injuries.
The majority of workers who experience hand injuries don’t wear gloves or don’t wear the correct type of gloves. Workers need to put gloves on whenever they deal with sharp objects, handle chemicals, or experience extreme weather.
A simple pair of gloves doesn’t cut it. Commercial-grade gloves with a strong grip can keep workers safe.
4. Fire Blankets
The possibility of a fire exists at a construction site, especially if the work involves electrical equipment. Fires can be started by damaged electrical wires, cables, or pipes.
Having safety materials for construction fires can save lives and minimise fire damage. Fire blankets made out of fire-resistant material can help. When a fire blanket gets placed over a fire, the blanket cuts off the fire’s oxygen supply and successfully extinguishes it.
In the case of an emergency, it can be thrown over a fire to quickly prevent it from burning when a fire extinguisher isn’t around.
5. Visibility Equipment
When a construction crew works on a bridge or road, it’s crucial for them to wear visibility equipment. Reflective clothing and bright colours worn by workers allow drivers to easily spot them from a distance.
Workers that don’t wear reflective jackets, vests, trousers, or jumpsuits increase their chances of being hit by a car or causing a car accident.
6. Vehicles with Safety Features
Before heading to a construction zone, all vehicles should be tested to make sure their safety features work. Many construction workers are injured or killed by malfunctioning vehicles and construction equipment.
Some items that all vehicles should have include loud horns, a back-up alarm, clear safety glass, functioning mirrors, working seatbelts, bright headlights, and brake lights, as well as proper windshield wipers.
7. Eye Protection
Safety glasses, or a face shield, is required when working in a construction site. Injuries to the eye or face are usually caused by objects that penetrate the eye. Welding, cutting, using nails, and concrete work put workers at a higher risk for eye or face injuries.
Jobs that involve smoke, utility work, and toxic chemicals can also pose a threat to safety. It’s essential for construction companies to ensure that each employee wears safety glasses when dealing with flying objects, gases, acids, molten metal, and other hazards.
8. Barricades and Signs
It might seem obvious to place barricades or signs near a construction site, but it’s sometimes overlooked. Having visible signs can alert drivers of a construction zone. This prevents drivers from speeding through a work area or accidentally driving through a construction zone.
Proper signage not only enhances the safety of motorists, but it also prevents injury or death of construction workers.
9. Safe Ladders
Ladders cause some of the most accidents among construction workers. This is often due to incorrect ladder usage or a damaged ladder.
Before workers use a ladder, they should always inspect it. Checking for grease, dirt, broken rails, and damaged rungs can prevent tragic slip and falls.
If a ladder is found to be defective, it should always be properly marked. Metal ladders should also not be used around any electrical work area.
10. Bridge Access Tools
Bridge workers often get injured or killed by falling off of a higher bridge level and onto a lower area. This mostly occurs when workers don’t use the correct equipment to reach certain areas of the bridge. Many workers utilize makeshift ways to access areas, but that’s not safe.
Equipment like bridge walkers, hydra platforms, UBITs, and Paxton-Mitchel snoopers can allow workers to safely access all sections of a bridge. For example, bridge walkers allow workers to be lowered 20 feet under a bridge, while a hydro platform can place workers 35 feet under a bridge.
Finding the Right Construction Safety Equipment for the Job
Safety protocols should never go ignored on a construction site. The proper construction safety equipment should be enforced by employers and workers alike. Something as simple as a hardhat or a construction sign can prevent accidents.
Whether the job is big or small, it’s important to be equipped with protective gear just in case. One single misstep or error can have disastrous results on a construction site.
Now that you have the right safety equipment, it’s time to invest in your building tools. Check out our article about why purchasing high-quality tools can help you grow your construction business.