Construction is a high-risk industry, with workers facing dangers on a daily basis. While there are many inherent risks in the construction field, following some basic safety principals can help minimize these risks. In this blog post we'll discuss 10 basic safety principals to follow in construction.

By following these simple guidelines, you can help keep yourself and your coworkers safe while working on a construction site.

1. Make safety a priority:

Always put your safety and the safety of your coworkers first: it’s not worth risking injury or death for a job. Be sure to receive proper training before performing any tasks on a construction site because it’s essential to know what you’re doing and how to do it safely. If you are ever unsure, ask for help before beginning.

2. Wear proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE):

Wearing the appropriate PPE at all times while working is a necessary part of keeping yourself safe in this industry. This includes items such as hard hats, safety glasses, and work gloves, plus many more, depending on what the task is.

3. Be aware of your surroundings and know what potential hazards are present:

Ensure you are on the lookout for hazards such as open trenches, power lines, and heavy machinery. Never work too close to the edge of a platform or too close to others to avoid potential accidents.

Follow all safety signs and posted warnings while on the job site and ensure you are familiar with any relevant SWMS and safety policies. 

4. Never take shortcuts while working:

It is always more important to get the job done safely and correctly than it is to get the job done quickly. Always use the proper tools for the job and ensure you are following the instruction manual. Failing to do so could mean your worksite is not liable in the event of an incident.

5. Pay attention to your body:

If you feel tired or dizzy, stop working and take a break. Heat exhaustion is a real danger on construction sites. Ensure you are hydrated and taking the appropriate breaks, as well as not coming into work when you are too sick to do so.

6. Report hazards and incidents:  

Even if you spot a hazard and manage to avoid it, a co-worker might not be so lucky and could be involved in a serious accident. All incidents and injuries must be reported, even if they seem minor. A scratch sustained at work might not seem like something to cause a fuss over but if it becomes infected, you will have no proof of this occurring at work if you fail to report it. It is always better to be safe than sorry.

7. Use caution when working with power tools or other dangerous equipment:

Be sure to read the instructions carefully before using any power tools or machinery, and always use the proper safety equipment. Familiarise yourself with the controls and safety features before beginning and inspect equipment before operating it.

This also includes using hand signals and following all traffic laws and regulations, as well as  maintaining a safe speed and ensuring that all machinery has come to a complete stop before exiting.

8. Be extra careful while working at heights:  

Use caution when climbing ladders or scaffolding, and always wear a safety harness if possible. Never take any shortcuts, such as reaching more than one rung above the top of the ladder or jumping down.

Also, be aware of the forecasted wind speeds for the day. If the forecast is for high winds, workers should take extra precautions. In extreme wind conditions, construction workers should not operate tall structures or work in exposed areas.

9. Work together:

If you see someone working in an unsafe manner, speak up and tell them to stop. It’s also a good idea not to work alone, or at least, to have another person nearby in case of an emergency.

10. Take care of yourself:

Get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet and never come to work under the influence of drugs and alcohol. The healthier and more well rested you are, the less likely you are to sustain an injury.

By following these 10 simple safety principles, you can help keep yourself and your coworkers safe while working on a construction site.

This guest post was submitted by Myles from Prepare Training who provide Construction Courses Online in Queensland!

This Post Is Part Of A Series: 101 Toolbox Topic Ideas For The Construction Industry
Do you struggle to come up with toolbox talk ideas each week to discuss with your workers? Fear no more, Work Safety QLD is here to the rescue with 101 Free Toolbox Talk Ideas for the Construction Industry.

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