Our SHEQ Advisor Antoinette’s top tips for CIF Construction Safety Week

CIF Construction Safety Week 25th October – 31st October

#CIFSafety21 is an initiative of the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) Safety and Health Subcommittee to raise awareness of safety at work. The goal of the campaign is to eliminate accidents at work and continue to improve employee’s health and safety performances.

As a Mechanical and Electrical contractor the Health and Safety of our staff is always our main priority at Michael Nugent Ltd.

We asked our SHEQ Advisor Antoinette her top tips on how to keep safe at work.Construction Safety Week - CIF

Health and Safety Training

All staff must have the correct Health and Safety training especially with construction. Operating with machinery, vehicles, heights, confined spaces etc are all high risk tasks within construction. You should be fully competent and aware of the risks that you are working with before carrying out your daily tasks. At Michael Nugent Ltd depending on the nature of the employee’s duties staff receive a range of training such as Confined Spaces, Working at Heights, First Aid, Mental Health First Aid, CSR card training, Mobile Elevating Work Platform (MEWP), PASMA, Asbestos, Abrasive Wheels and Manual Handling.

Hierarchy of Control

Within construction, especially onsite, it is very important to use the hierarchy of control to manage the risk when planning works.  Risks should be reduced to the lowest reasonably practicable level by taking preventative measures in order of priority.

  1. Elimination – Redesign the job or substitute a substance so that the hazard is removed of completely eliminated.
  2. Substitution – Replace the material or process with a less hazardous one. For example, use a small MEWP to access work at height instead of step ladders.  Care should always be taken to ensure the alternative is safer than the original.
  3. Engineering Controls – Use work equipment or other measures to prevent falls where you cannot avoid working at height. Separate the hazard from operators by methods such as enclosing or guarding dangerous items of machinery/equipment.
  4. Administrative Controls – These are all about identifying and implementing the procedures you need to work safely. For example: reducing the time workers are exposed to hazards, increasing safety signage and performing risk assessments.
  5. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – Ensure you have the correct PPE, it is crucial that you wear the required PPE to prevent injuries such as; hard hat, gloves, high-vis, steel toe boots. Any additional PPE such as goggles and dust masks are to be worn as and when required.  This is the last line of defence against an injury when using the hierarchy of control.

Health and Safety Signs

Construction health and safety signs are always important to have on display to showcase the potential dangers on site for both workers and the public too. Whether it be precautionary signs or highlighting hazards all signs must be displayed.

Phones & Earphones

Phones and devices must only be used for emergencies, within designated phone zones and during break times as they are a hazard to employees and others around them.

Tools

Power tools must be pat tested and regularly checked to ensure they have no malfunctions, defects etc. Hand tools must be checked to ensure that there are no defects regularly when being used.

Tool Box Talks  

Workplace safety is important for many reasons; promoting health and safety, ensuring staff are happy and safe, reducing injuries, more productive, communication etc. These 10-15-minute daily talks are essential to promote department safety to promote health and eliminate injuries. These talks also include; general housekeeping, first aid toolbox talks, accident reporting, manual handling safety of lifting and much more.

Communication

Good communicate with your co-worker is essential and helps ensure they aware of any potential risks. If an incident does occur onsite ensure you report it to your line manager.

Construction Safety Week