Construction Site Safety: How To Reduce Dangerous Slips and Falls

Worker walking on trackSlipping and tripping on construction sites is a major hazard; some 1,000 injuries sustained by site workers in an average year involve broken bones and dislocations. Obstacles, stray cabling, wet surfaces, uneven surfaces and changes in level are the main causes of incidents.

Slippery or wet surfaces

Wet – mop up or dry as far as possible and use clear warning signs.

Slippery – if possible, make safe by mopping up if a liquid and using warning signs. If a substance such as ice or mud, then use an appropriate ‘gripping medium’ such as grit or stones.

Much could be done to vastly reduce these risks. For example, the use of non-slip temporary surfaces such as those from Tufftrak Mats to cover slippery surfaces is one safety measure worth taking.

Uneven surfaces

A common risk on newer sites before roadways and paths have been constructed to level the ground up, these can be made safer by the creation of designated walkways, signage and good lighting.

Trailing cabling

Using cordless tools is a help, but where cabling has to be run then keeping them tidy, moved to one side away from foot and vehicular traffic, and perhaps raised and run well above ground are some measurers worth taking.

Level changes

Where an abrupt level change such as a step or ridge is in evidence. These can be made safer using ramps – failing this, clear warning signs and bright tape or paint on the leading edge is advisable.

Obstacles

Remove items likely to cause a hazard as soon as possible – a typical issue on sites when, for example, deliveries are made or machinery is left somewhere.

Site users, staff and contractors should be encouraged to look out for and advise when hazardous situations arise.