Be Safe — On-the-Job Safety is More Important Than Ever

By Andrew Wilson

As construction workers, we have essential jobs that help keep businesses running and homes safe enough to live in for people. As we get up and ready for work every day, we’re taking risks, and due to that we should be very careful and take as many safety precautions as we can. With that in mind, here are a few tips that construction workers should follow in order to stay safe when doing their job. 

Follow Social Distancing Rules as Much as You Can

Social distancing is one of the key ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19. While it’s understandable that some construction workers may have an easier time doing this than others, it’s important to be doing as much as we can. One way that employers can help with this in industries where social distancing is difficult like drywall or painting is simply reducing the number of employees at each job. As a home improvement contractor, who runs, what I’ve been doing is reducing the number of employees at job sites by at least 25% even if that means the job takes longer than usual. 

Job site safety is critical. Always be aware of others in your immediate vicinity.

Research COVID-19 Symptoms 

It’s important to stay informed of the symptoms that COVID-19 causes. This can help you decide when you’re showing symptoms and need to stay home, or when you notice that somebody else close to you is showing symptoms. Staying up to date with the latest news and best practices can help you figure out if you’re being as safe as you can at your job. The CDC has a great resource here to stay up to date and learn more about the virus. 

Wear Safety Equipment 

Due to the dangerous environments that some of us work in, safety equipment is something that some of us already use. However, this sometimes leads us to forget just how important it really is and take it for granted sometimes. Remember that apart from wearing gloves and masks to keep us safe during the pandemic, we shouldn’t forget the equipment like safety glasses and vests that keeps us safe while doing our jobs. Which then leads us to our next point. 

Some situations are more hazardous than others. Take every precaution possible to be safe.

Remember the Basics

Sometimes when trying to follow new rules, it’s easy to forget the old rules that have always been there. You should remember to continue doing the same thing you should have been doing before this whole thing even got started. This means avoiding touching your eyes or mouth when you haven’t washed your hands, especially those of us who work in environments with a lot of dust around. Always covering your mouth and nose when you sneeze. Washing your hands with soap often.  

Avoid Sharing Tools 

Every worker should have their own set of tools that only they use. While this isn’t always possible, then you should at least be wiping down the tools with alcohol wipes after each use. COVID-19 is easily transmittable, hence you should be careful with who you are sharing the tools with and be on the lookout for symptoms to keep you and your coworkers safe.  

One other thing that should be noted is that workers with medical conditions should be taking even more precautions and be making serious considerations about their current work status. As the CDC has explained, people with previous medical conditions are at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. While this pandemic is going on, we must be on full alert and continue taking safety precautions in order to keep ourselves and our families safe. I hope these tips help you stay safe while doing your job. 

Andrew Wilson has been working as a home improvement contractor in the Madison, WI area for over 15+ years. He has experience doing kitchen, bathroom, and home remodeling and all types of home repairs. 

You can reach out to him or learn more about him on his blog

This material appeared in the June 2020 issues of the ACP Magazines:

California Builder & Engineer, Construction, Construction Digest, Construction News, Constructioneer, Dixie Contractor, Michigan Contractor & Builder, Midwest Contractor, New England Construction, Pacific Builder & Engineer, Rocky Mountain Construction, Texas Contractor, Western Builder