Construction Site Health & Safety for the Layperson
Anyone attending construction sites or accompanying guests should be aware of these essential site health and safety requirements.
Wear Protective Clothing
It may not be stylish, but when it comes to safety, its not a fashion contest. Wearing protective clothing, in particular a strong soled pair of shoes and hard hat, is essential. Depending upon the site you may also want to have other protective clothing like safety gloves, steel capped boots and safety goggles. Listen to the site manager and follow their requirements for protective clothing.
Keep your Mobile Phone in your Pocket
Keep your focus on where you are walking and looking around you whole you are on any construction site. Do not text while walking and also don’t take calls which push your attention elsewhere. If you MUST take a call, which we would highly discourage, stop where you are until your call is finished and try and keep your eye out for falling objects or other moving hazards.
Heed Warning Signs
Warning signs are put in place for a reason. Make sure that you pay attention to the signs and follow the instructions that they issue. Make sure that you also point out warning signs to any guests who are accompanying you in order to be sure that they have been noticed.
Avoid Walking Under Anyone Working at Height
Keep a careful eye out for people working at height and avoid walking beneath them as much as possible. While construction workers who are operating at height usually take the utmost care, it is very easy for them to drop something or knock something that then falls below. It is essential that anyone on a construction site is as aware of what is happening above them as below and around them.
Do not Venture onto any Scaffolding or Up Ladders
If you are not part of the labour team there is absolutely no reason for you to be on any scaffolding. Furthermore, there is very little reason to go up any ladder. Keep your feet planted firmly on the ground to avoid any trips or falls.
Keep Clear of Vehicles
Even construction professionals fall fowl of moving vehicles. Always keep well clear of construction machinery and vehicles and do not ever attempt to pass between moving vehicles. Don’t forget that some vehicles have a 360 degree movement of parts, so look carefully before you decide how to move in the vicinity of construction machinery.
Look but Don't Touch
Avoid touching anything on a construction site. You do not know what chemicals have been used, whether it is set if something like concrete or paint, or if there are other reasons that you might not touch such as an electrical current or other hazzards.
Don't Allow Children on Site
To many children there is something playground-esque about a construction site. Things to climb on, holes to jump over, ladders to go up and so on. If there is no where safe to leave children they should be carried at all times and for teenages they should be told about health and safety rules before accessing the site.