The construction industry is a necessity in almost every country in the world. Without it, houses, shopping centers, schools, transport infrastructure, political buildings, sports stadiums, and all the other essential services that people rely on every day to go about daily life, would simply not be there. Construction is fundamental to our way of life. But working in the industry comes with a heavy set of health and safety risks. Here are four of the most common hazards. Read them and you, as a construction worker, can avoid harming yourself and others, or developing lasting damage.
Construction staff are often seen working at great heights. Heights that make knees wobble and heads spin. And for a good reason too. Falling from such heights can cause unthinkable damage and potentially be fatal. Falls are often caused by loose scaffolding or ladders, the absence of safety nets and lines, or loose equipment. If work high in the clouds cannot be avoided, always make sure the correct safety precautions are taken and put in place to avoid disaster.
- Moving Objects and Vehicles
On a construction site, there is a constant buzz of machinery and movement, whether it be lorries and trucks, or cranes and equipment. With this movement, comes a whole load of risks. When spaces are tight, heavy objects are being lifted overhead, and vehicles are maneuvering around, construction workers are put in danger. Especially when visibility is poor, it’s important to wear proper protective clothing, high vis jackets, helmets, and teel capped shoes for maximum protection. All site workers should also have the appropriate training so that they remain vigilant on site and avoid such hazards.
- Loud Noise
If you have ever had construction work being done close to your home, you will know how annoyingly noisy and chaotic a construction site can be. The noise starts at seven in the morning (of course) and continues all through the day, occasionally getting unbearably loud as the drilling into the concrete begins. While these noise levels are a minor (or major) annoyance to the surrounding areas for a short period of time, they can prove to be a high risk for the construction workers if they are consistently exposed without proper protection. Having high quality ear protection is essential when working in loud environments to prevent any long-lasting damage being done to construction workers’ hearing.
The use of power tools means construction workers are often exposed to intense vibrations, which can cause severe damage to nerves and blood vessels. Commonly referred to as hand-arm vibration syndrome, workers often find their dexterity and grasp is affected in the long run if it is left untreated. To avoid developing problems through vibration, hand-held machinery should only be used for short periods of time after the proper training has been provided. The machinery needs to be well maintained and protective gloves should always be worn.
Even though there are hundreds to consider, it is important that construction workers are aware of the risks and dangers that could be surrounding them while on site and at work so the proper measures can be taken to minimize risks and long-term damage to health.