By Construction Tech Review | Monday, August 12, 2019
Resolving and upgrading worker safety at construction site gains momentum with rapid technological advancement and better capabilities.
FREMONT, CA: Optimizing safety for workers in the construction industry has always been the priority. With the kind of equipment and construction practices, the industry has to be proactive to ensure worker safety. The technologies used in construction have evolved over the years. This mandates a similar transformation when it comes to safety. Safety at a construction site can have two aspects: safety through equipment and safety through best practices. While the first aspect has more to do with using personal safety equipment and gadgets, the later is concerned with a set of standard rules that enhance the scope of worker safety.
In a construction zone, there are many physical activities carried out simultaneously. Where human labor did a majority of the work previously, many machines are involved today. The incorporation of machines has effectively reduced the burden on workers as they now have to do fewer jobs. The jobs are becoming less strenuous and intensive. Thus, the nature of dangers and safety risks has changed. While previously the risks involved managing heavyweights, direct contact with hazardous substances and such, whereas now the threats are inclined towards harms from automatic machinery and changing technological applications of which laborers are not sufficiently aware.
The broad spectrums of safety practices in the construction industry are aimed towards mitigating risks and keeping them from causing life-threatening accidents. Safeguarding the employees and putting across the message of safety is essential for the managers and contractors. The first step towards building a safe work environment is concerned with generating awareness among workers. Experienced or inexperienced, skilled or unskilled, every worker should be briefed about their roles and potential risks in the nature of work.
The nature of work at a construction site is dynamic. Workers are often introduced to situations where they are unsure of their exact role. Providing workers with easy ways of communicating their apprehensions and doubts creates better safety standards. It prevents workers from taking ignorant and risky steps. Communication devices that facilitate rapid and clear conveyance of information are essential in such cases. With technological advancements in place, construction companies should look to use smartphones, messaging apps, walkie-talkies, and headsets.
Safety cameras are another critical aspect of construction safety. Documenting day-to-day activities at the construction site enables visibility and helps determine areas of risk so they can be fixed at the earliest. The documentation also protects companies from legal action in case there happens to be an accident for which the firm isn't responsible.
Other equipment that can bolster safety at construction sites include wearables. Research and development to make safety gear for construction workers have led to the creation of some innovative gadgets and accessories. Safety gear like vests and hard hats with improved characteristics and additional features are now available. Sensor aided monitoring of worker health through wearables is also picking up.
An alert workforce ensures safety like nothing else does. The aspect of training comes in the same vein as awareness. Before beginning the work on any project, every worker should be trained and made adept at the skill of safety. Contractors should convey the message of 'safety first' and conduct generic training as well as specialized training for employees wherever necessary. Training for safety equips the workforce with the right information and preparedness. Mock sessions are extremely valuable to ingrain the safety steps in the minds of workers.
Ultimately, the most critical aspect of for construction safety still comes to be supervision. A supervisor handles and coordinates all the safety aspects and makes sure that every task meets standards of safety and compliance.