Spring weather is upon us, which means rain, fog, and fluctuating temperatures. The weather is unpredictable. Some days will be perfect for outdoor construction, and others will pose safety hazards for you and your team. Below you will find a list of concerns in relation to construction in spring weather; you will also note a few tips for maintaining a safe and pleasant working environment for your employees.
Spring Construction Hazards
Rain: April showers can bring more than May flowers; heavy rain can also cause work conditions to become dangerous. It is important to keep the ground in good solid condition to prevent workers from slipping and machinery from losing traction. Heavy machinery does not fair well on soggy ground. The use of quality plastic or steel crane pads will give the equipment a stable surface, making the job easier and safer for workers.
Impaired Vision: Weather conditions can impair a worker?s vision enough to put him and the rest of the team in jeopardy. Be sure all safety goggles are sprayed with anti-fogging solutions, and give all workers wipes or towels to clear any condensation, mud, or water.
Temperature: The weather is warming up, but spring does have its colder days. Make sure your team is dressed appropriately for the weather and let them rest indoors periodically. Train your workers to recognize the warning signs of cold stress. On hotter days make sure that water is readily available for your team to avoid dehydration.
OSHA regulations require cranes to be assembled on firm ground that has been drained and graded sufficiently, and supporting materials must be used such as outrigger pads, cribbing, and blocking to provide adequate support and levelness. Large mobile cranes are likely to tip while in operation, particularly if it is carrying a load that is too big. According to the CDC, the rate of crane spills is about one in every 10,000 hours of operation. This is why the use of crane pads is so important. According to data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, between 1997 and 2006 there was an average of 82 crane-related deaths every year. Read more like this.