Safety has always been key in the construction business, as it is one of the most dangerous jobs out there. COVID has only increased some of these risks, and so it is important to revisit your safety requirements and checklists to make sure that you and your craftsmen are doing everything possible to be safe on the job. Acknowledging that all worksites and all job situations are different and require their own unique precautions, here are some of the gear and procedures for consideration at your next jobsite:
Ensure that all the equipment is cleaned and sanitized – especially door handles, start buttons, pens, and anything else that is being touched regularly. Also make sure that you assign members of the team to do it intermittently, and provide protective equipment including masks and gloves to anyone who is doing this task. Provide hand sanitizer around the jobsite for easy access and encourage all craftsmen to regularly clean their own tools, mobile devices, and other items they have on hand.
We realize it is not always feasible but encourage your craftsmen to at least be aware of their space and attempt at keeping 6 feet apart from each other while working. It may also help to adjust your team’s shifts so that everyone is not starting or ending their workday at the exact same time to keep them from congregating at breaks and trips up elevators, etc. Some employers are even scheduling their craftsmen to work in smaller groups, alternating on different sets of days on the jobsite and in the office, in order to keep the number of people they are regularly exposed to at a limit.
Respirator protection has always been key on a construction site when needed to block toxic chemicals and other particles from getting into the lungs. Now they do double-duty by helping to lower the chance of transmitting COVID to others within range on the jobsite. Powered respirators that give positive pressure, with air-purifying capabilities are even better, as they keep a tight seal around the nose and mouth.
Signs ensure that your craftsmen know where things are located, and which areas are dangerous, restricted or off-limits. Signage also serves as a great reminder of anything new that is not a habit yet, so take advantage of how they can extend important messages and other communication. They can help encourage your team to use sanitizer, keep masks on, and keep the area clean. Make sure they are highly visible and well-placed where your craftsmen can see and read them easily.
Face & Eye Shields
We’re accustomed to protecting our eyes on a jobsite with goggles – but leveling with full face-shields will do an even better job of preventing injury from flying debris from cutting, chipping, and grinding the building materials. And these shields again provide an extra benefit as they can help prevent COVID from spreading through coughing or sneezing and sending particles of the disease from one craftsman to the next.
As you probably know, most serious and deadly injuries are a result of falling, so take extra precaution to keep your craftsmen safe when at dangerous heights or around holes, pits, and ditches. Equipment such as guardrails, safety nets, and covers can help – and personal fall-arrest systems are key when they need to work up high. Temporary security fences can also help keep craftsmen – and the public – away from areas or equipment that is potentially dangerous.
It is more important than ever to make sure your craftsmen are taking proper work breaks. Allow them time to walk away and take off the mask so they can breathe in some fresh air and sunshine. This practice of recovery will give them more energy to complete their projects well.
If you are looking for craftsmen who can help you keep your next building project safe, contact Madden Industrial Craftsmen through our website or by calling! We can match the right craftsmen with the talents you need to keep building!