Manual labor is inherently risky. When working with heavy or hazardous materials, accidents can feel like a given. However, the Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) Act of 1970 put into place a variety of measures to prevent just that. These measures involve safety inspections, regulations and guidelines about workplace safety and the treatment of employees. OSHA outlines three steps for preventing accidents and saving lives: plan, provide, train.
In 2001 alone, there were more than 480,000 non-fatal injuries at construction-related jobs. Many accidents happen due to faulty equipment like ineffective lifting products, old fall protection equipment or hazardous material handling. To address this issue and plan for safer years to come, OSHA performs random safety inspections on construction companies each year.
The average construction worker makes around $26 per hour. However, safety equipment like hard hats, steel toe boots and web slings can be costly. Many companies provide branded versions of these required construction items to their employees. This way, their brand is advertised, OSHA’s safety standards are met and everyone remains safer than they would be without the safety equipment.
Educating employees about potential hazards in the workplace is the best way to avoid accidents. OSHA advises construction companies to provide training for trip, slip and fall. When construction companies estimate the price for a job, they include the cost of training their employers on any hazards specific to said job. They also factor in any additional safety equipment like web slings or rigging certification. Safety becomes cost effective when companies remember to share the burden with their customers.
Our schools, businesses, and homes are all built on the backs of people willing to perform manual labor and get the job done. Construction workers lend their bodies to the construction of all the beautiful things around us. That makes is particularly important to keep safety in mind when it comes to the construction work place.