Slips, trips and falls are a common occurance in the construction industry. These injuries can cause serious damage in the form of head injuries, back injuries, broken bones, sprains and strains to muscles. Even trying to catch your balance when you slip or trip can cause serious injuries, regardless of whether or not you actually fall.
Although injuries resulting from slips, trips and falls are easily preventable, they still happen. In fact, slips, trips and falls account for the majority of workplace accidents at construction sites. Here are the many ways in which you can protect yourself against slips, trips and falls on the job.
Tips to Avoid Slipping
Keep the following suggestions in mind to avoid these hazards while at work:
- Wear personal protective equipment (PPE) such as a hard hat, work gloves, safety shoes and eye protection.
- Be aware of slipping and falling hazards when working on raised platforms.
- Use guardrails and guards around work areas that are prone to slips, trips and falls.
- Inspect and secure stairs and handrails to ensure their strength.
- Use ladders only in good repair that do not have missing rungs.
- Do not install stairs with missing or damaged steps.
- Keep walkways clean and free of debris or other tripping hazards.
- Keep all cords and hoses orderly and clear of walking spaces.
- Conduct a pre-job inspection to identify and eliminate or correct hazardous working conditions.
- Wear appropriate waterproof footgear to decrease your chance of slipping and falling.
- In wet weather, work under covered areas.
Be on the Lookout
If you notice any conditions on the construction site that you think may present a slipping hazard, correct them immediately or let your supervisor know. Quickly resolving the problem could mean saving yourself or a co-worker from lost pay, injury or death.
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This list is not exhaustive; assessing your exposures and taking the appropriate precautions can go a long way toward protecting your business and your workers. This proactive approach is particularly important when it comes to identifying and avoiding gaps in your risk management program.
Download our “Construction Employee Safety Manual” guide for an in-depth list of more ways to minimize gaps in your risk management and keep your employees safe: