Workplace safety on construction sites is certainly a top priority. Having a safe work environment protects workers from injury and illness and can also lower costs associated with injury and illness for companies.
In addition to this, having a safe work environment can increase productivity and even boost employee morale. Many companies don’t actually follow the best practices for workplace safety. However, all employees desire to work in a safe environment. For this reason, it should be the standard operating procedure for companies to ensure that all their employees are working in the best environment possible to accomplish their tasks safely and efficiently.
Read on to learn how companies can improve workplace safety on a construction site.
Provide Continuous Training
It goes without saying that training is important for safety in any industry. But it’s especially important for employees working on a construction site.
When employees are knowledgeable about what to do in the workplace, businesses can improve their company safety culture. Providing your employees with proper training also shows your employees that you are committed to their health and safety, which can boost your employee morale. But training isn’t something that’s just a one-time event. Training should be implemented continuously to ensure that employees are up to date on the best safety practices and that they are keeping safety top of minds.
Hold Everyone Accountable
Keeping the work environment safe is a group effort. While business owners and managers should always enforce the best safety practices, everyone should be held accountable for keeping the construction site safe. This means that workers should come to the construction site with the mindset that unsafe practices put them and those around them in danger.
With that said, it’s important to have safety rules that are clearly defined. You also need to explain to everyone on the site what consequences can arise when they don’t follow the rules.
It’s also essential that you motivate your employees to speak up when they notice unsafe working conditions or when coworkers fail to follow safety protocols.
Conduct Site Inspections
Having periodic site inspections along with safety meetings is important when working on a construction site. In fact, construction sites should be inspected before each workday begins and after each workday ends to address any safety concerns that don’t fall in line with the best safety practices.
For instance, make note of things like tools being left behind or equipment that isn’t working properly or is damaged. It’s also essential to monitor the construction site throughout the day to quickly identify any safety hazards and ensure that all workers are working as safely as possible.
In addition to this, it’s important to hold scheduled safety meetings in the morning before the workday begins to go over what tasks need to be performed for the day. It’s also a good time to address any concerns that you have on the construction site and openly acknowledge good practices that you’ve observed that supports safety efforts.
Reward Good Practices and Correct Bad Ones
Acknowledgment is important when reinforcing workplace safety. For that reason, it’s important to use incentives to reward workers who you see are following safe working practices, consistently attending safety meetings, and always wearing the proper work gear. Just be mindful of the possible consequences when using an incentive program. If workers always rely on incentives, it can lead to an underreporting of incidents.
At the same time, it’s important to correct bad practices. Your workers won’t be perfect. The best way to help them ensure they follow the right safety protocols on the construction site is to educate them on behaviors that don’t align with safety protocols. Encouraging good behavior and correcting improper behaviors as necessary can result in fewer accidents and injuries, promoting optimal workplace safety.
Get Workers Involved
There’s no better way to improve workplace safety on the construction site than to get all workers involved. You may want to consider putting together a safety committee that includes members from all levels of your team.
These individuals will be involved in reviewing the current safety protocols, updating your company’s safety program, developing safety plans during the pre-construction phase, and helping determine any potential hazards that can threaten safety on the site.
The more involved your employees feel in the process, the more vested they will be in the safety of not only themselves but everyone on the work site. In addition to this, having a committee makes it easier to express concerns and potential hazards. This leads to a reduction in errors and keeps construction incidents low.
Provide the Appropriate Gear
Another crucial aspect of improving workplace safety is ensuring that all workers have the appropriate gear as they work. Those who work on construction sites are often working with hazardous materials that can threaten their safety.
Unfortunately, when workers do not have the appropriate work attire, they can experience long-term damage to areas of the body like their ears, arms, hands, feet, and more.
All employers should be supplying their workers with the right gear to ensure they are working in the safest conditions. This means having appropriate hard hats, eye protection, and hearing protection.
Workers also need gear, such as the right working gloves, fall arrest systems, restraints, and rubber boots with steel toes. Your workers will also benefit from high-visibility bib overalls, which will provide them with protective coverage as they work on the construction site.
Keeping your workers protected on the construction site should be a top priority. All employees deserve to work in a safe work environment, and this is especially crucial for employees who are constantly working with hazardous materials and in dangerous conditions.