The construction site can be a very dangerous place, more so if the correct precautions are not taken or the correct PPE or personal protective equipment is not worn. There are certain requirements that need to be understood and adhered to regarding personal protective equipment whilst on a construction site. By identifying and understanding the risks associated with work on a construction site we can put in place preventative measures to reduce these risks and hazards. The most basic form of accident prevention concerns the use of personal protective equipment such as hard hats, gloves, safety eye-wear, overalls and construction rain gear.
Head, hand and eye protection
Hard hats should be worn at all times on a construction site. This reduces the risk of injury should the worst happen and something unexpectedly breaks free and falls to the ground from a height or from some scaffolding. Hard hats should be fit for purpose and be the correct size so that it does not become loose and fall off during certain tasks. Sometimes construction workers will be required to work at heights where they may be exposed to higher wind speeds. If this is the case it is advised that a chin strap be utilised in order to prevent the hard hat being blown off by the high winds. This will not only protect yourself but also protect those working on the ground below as a hard hat falling from any height has the ability to cause injury to any person it strikes at ground level.
Hand protection is important due to the nature of the work being carried out on the construction site. In many cases, workers will be working with sharp objects such as knives, moving machinery and other cutting implements which have the potential to cause injury to unprotected hands and arms. Eye protection should be worn when required. For tasks such as welding it is a requirement to wear a welding mask in addition to your eye protection. When working with any dangerous chemicals goggles may need to be worn in addition to your eye protection due to the risk of chemical spillage or high pressure chemical releases.
Construction rain gear should be available to all staff when the need arises for them to work in adverse weather conditions. Rain protection clothing comes in the form of waterproof jackets, coats, trousers and overalls. It is important to keep dry especially in colder conditions due to the risk of hypothermia and other temperature related illnesses. All rain protection clothing should be a suitable size so that it is not too tight or excessively loose as this can cause problems with regards to freedom of movement and interference with machinery or other moving parts equipment.