While there is much potential for injury and risk within our industry, construction companies work diligently to maintain and improve worksite safety. Many of the strategies used to ensure safety are tried and tested, but responsible firms must invest time and resources taking their safety procedures and protocols to new heights.
Create A Culture Of Safety
Safety begins well before your crew hits the worksite. Even if your team is tenured, you must train all new hires on your safety expectations and provide recurrent safety training. Once hired, you must provide ongoing awareness and safety training unique to each job site.
The most important part of your safety culture must be to create a system of checks and balances. Utilizing both general and site-specific checklists is an excellent way to assess accountability. Most importantly, you must have a system in place for how to handle a lapse in safety standards—even if an incident has yet to occur.
Advances in technology provide some powerful new ways to improve worksite safety. A few to consider include:
- Drones that can be utilized for remote inspection and surveying.
- Exoskeleton suits that increase strength, reduce the risk of injury and make it easier to lift and carry heavy objects.
- Virtual reality used to train and test employees on how to operate heavy equipment and machinery.
- Wearable safety equipment that automatically improves safety, such as hardhats with solar powered ‘auto-on’ LED lighting.
- Advanced site sensors that automatically sense temperature, noise levels, dust particulates, and volatile organic compounds.
Improve Communication Channels
The larger your worksite, the more simultaneous projects. The more projects, the greater the need for clear and timely communication. For starters, there needs to be a clearly mapped out chain of command. Next, your superintendent, project managers, individual, departments, and sub-contractors each need to have a point-person. To ensure nothing falls through the cracks, real-time communication software and electronics are a must. However, it’s not just your management team who need to be in the communication loop. To truly improve worksite safety, construction companies must conduct daily site safety meetings.
Have Maintenance And Repairs System In Place
Your heavy machinery, equipment, and safety tools play a vital role in worksite safety. To ensure they are sound, and can perform their job to the best of their ability—you must have a clear maintenance and repairs system in place. This should include ongoing checklists and visual inspections. However, your machine operators must be empowered to share when something simply doesn’t sound or feel as if it is working properly.
Your team is your most valuable asset, which is why construction companies must work diligently to reduce risk—and improve worksite safety. This is an ongoing process that must never be underestimated. When an incident occurs, rectify the situation ASAP—and use each incident as learning opportunity to improve upon your current safety protocols.
If you are looking to add a few more responsible construction professionals to your team, reach out to TBG today to discuss filling your open positions.