Ways To Keep Workers Safe In The Construction Industry

Construction Workers

It’s never been safer to work in the construction industry, but that doesn’t mean that the risk of injury and illness in the sector isn’t still prominent. The domestic construction industry still sees tens of thousands of injuries and illnesses recorded every year. Between 2018 and 2021, the sector averaged 74,000 work-related illnesses and 61,000 non-fatal injuries a year, with 39 fatalities in 2020-2021 alone.

Those numbers demand ongoing attention from regulatory bodies and employers alike. But with the latter taking on much of the responsibility for day-to-day safety in the industry, what can construction businesses be doing to ensure good core safety practices on site? Even companies that arrive on site like construction equipment shipping companies such as need to comply with high safety standards.

Improve your PPE

PPE may have found a strange form of celebrity through the COVID-19 pandemic, but it has been the foundational building block of modern health and safety in construction since the introduction of the Personal Protective Equipment Regulations in 1992.

As a business owner, it’s essential to provide your employees with the appropriate PPE for the job. Typical construction projects demand the likes of helmets, hi-vis clothing, knee pads, and ear and eye protection. Furthermore, on-site PPE should be of the highest quality and well maintained – being replaced as soon as it’s no longer fit for purpose.

Invest in health and safety training

An investment in health and safety training is an investment in the business itself. According to an analysis by Herts Tools Co, injuries and ill health are costing the UK construction industry upwards of £16.2 billion a year.

If you don’t want to pay more into that pot than you have to, health and safety training should be another fundamental alongside your PPE. Training staff to understand the risks of the job, instilling sound on-site practices, and teaching the proper use of equipment will all pay dividends from both an ethical and financial standpoint.

Install a “Safety Concern hazardous” Box

You could create a confidential safety box where employees can anonymously submit any concerns about the job site hazards. This allows employers to stay informed about any hazardous conditions, or faulty equipment. Meaning they can address these situations immediately. Being anonymous means employees feel safe when they express their concerns without fear of being reprimanded

Get construction insurance

With everyday safety concerns to take into account in the construction industry, the importance of comprehensive construction insurance has never been higher. Having something in place which can potentially protect your business will ensure your staff can enter every new project with the knowledge that they have a much-needed safety net in place.

Of the aforementioned £16.2bn costs of injury and ill health in the construction sector this past year, employers are estimated to have shouldered around 20% (£3.16bn) of the burden. Perhaps more shocking is that the injured and ill individuals themselves suffer the brunt (59%, or £9.56bn) of the costs.

Statistics like these press the importance of proper health and safety even further home for construction businesses. Employers may utilise health and safety practices to protect their profit margins and productivity first, but the duty of care they owe to their employees stretches well beyond the initial trauma of an injury or illness suffered on-site.

With the physical, mental and financial toll of construction-based injuries and illnesses a potentially heavy one on your employees, ensuring good health and safety practices should be the cornerstone of your everyday operations.

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