Safety should be your number one priority when running an excavation site. After all, if someone gets injured on the job, it can set your project back weeks – or even months. Don’t even start on the cost of medical bills and Worker’s Compensation claims.
In this blog post, Action Asphalt will discuss some tips for keeping your construction crew safe at all times. And don’t forget: if you’re looking for a reliable asphalt contractor, our team is here to help!
Tip 1: Clothing and Equipment
It’s a standard rule for every construction worker to come armed with a hard hat, safety glasses, and boots. But when it comes to excavation sites, there are a few other essential items: highly visible clothing and warning vests near traffic and rescue equipment.
In addition, your employees should have training in PPE (personal protective equipment) and understand when it’s necessary to wear it. Double up on caution with safety harnesses and lifelines when working in deep, confined spaces.
Tip 2: Watch Your Step
Excavation sites can be dangerous, with trenches and holes quickly leading to injury. Make sure your crew is aware of the danger zones and avoid walking in those areas whenever possible. No one should enter a trench, even for a moment, without taking the proper precautions.
In addition, encourage your team to keep an active lookout for each other and themselves. Avoid working above your fellow crew member if you’re on a slope face or at a benched excavation. As for yourself, never walk under suspended loads, and stay away from vehicles during loading and offloading.
Tip 3: Within and Without
When toiling underground, you might come across issues such as water accumulation and hazardous gases, to name a few. To combat these, always have an air monitor on hand. Make sure all of your crew are aware of escape routes in an emergency.
If you have a water issue, ensure you install proper pumping and drainage systems and ensure all crew members know where they are. Avoid working with toxic gases by taking regular atmospheric testing, and always have an emergency plan in place.
Tip 4: Plan Ahead
As we mentioned in our earlier tip, toxic gases and flammable materials can be considerable at excavation sites. To avoid any dangerous situations, always plan and take the necessary precautions.
Your employees should have proper ventilation to avoid exposure to harmful gases, and you should always have a fire extinguisher on hand in case of an emergency. They should also know the location of all water, electric, and gas lines, clearly marked.
Tip 5: Reconnoiter
Mark it first on your to-do list to closely monitor your surroundings within a trench. It’s not enough to look at the worksite from the outside. You need to go inside and take a closer look at things, making sure that everything is in its proper place.
Potential hazards could include unstable edges, cave-ins, rigging hazards, damaged utility lines, standing water, toxic gases, to name a few.
Those were five comprehensive tips to help you ensure a safe excavation site. If you need reliable assistance with asphalt paving, Action Asphalt is in Sacramento, CA, to help. We offer high-quality services, and we always prioritize safety on the job.