Safety Tips For Construction Workers: Simple Ways To Protect Yourself From Injury

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, requires anyone working six feet or higher off the ground to practice fall protection. For those who work in construction, fall hazards are a dangerous reality that threaten large portions of every work day. Learn what you should do when falls occur, or better still, learn to prevent them altogether, by following a few safely rules religiously:

Always Wear Your PPE

Your personal protective equipment is issued to you for a reason. It will help lessen the severity of any injuries you may encounter throughout your work day. It can even save your life. But in order for your PPE to do this effectively, you must wear it when and how it's required. In general, this means fastening all the straps, zipping up completely, leaving sleeves rolled down, and keeping face shields in place. For construction workers, this specifically means wearing your tether and your body harness when required. It also means making sure your tether is securely attached on the other end and that all the points of your harness are engaged. 

Use Equipment Properly

Guardrails, scaffolding, aerial lifts and elevated platforms are designed with worker safety in mind. But they can't do their jobs if you circumvent them. Even a ladder can become a dangerous instrument if you place it incorrectly or over-extend its reach. Know how to use the equipment you're required to utilize every day, and then take care to do it properly -- no monkeying up the sides of scaffolding, no stepping off the toeboards, and no balancing outside the guardrails. 

Understand the Retrieval System

Construction companies are required by OSHA to have a retrieval system in place if a worker falls. Familiarize yourself with the plan so you can act quickly and responsibly should you be the only person close enough to help. Sign up for any training your company offers regarding fall prevention, and participate in drills when possible. 

If you follow the simple safety measures put in place by your company and adhere to basic safety practices, you'll limit the number of work place accidents you have each year. But more importantly, you'll be able to leave the construction site each day in the same condition that you arrived. It's your health and your future that's on the line when you make impulsive decisions to forego security measures. Don't make the wrong choice. For more information on fall protection and to buy equipment, contact a company like Public Works Supply.