Construction project ranging from residential to infrastructure projects, heavy equipment is a necessity. Using heavy construction equipment needs training on how to work with it safely. The powerful machines can be dangerous if the workers use them improperly.

Fortunately, workers who are aware of the capability of the workhorses like a huge excavator or skid steer even understand the risks associated while operating them. Therefore, they take steps to reduce possible accidents. The smart operators and helpers working around truly value the significance of bulky equipment safety.

Significance of heavy equipment safety

According to OSHA, the construction sector is one of the dangerous occupations, where American workers die due to fall from heights, electrocutions, struck by some object, and caught between construction materials or machinery. All the accidents associated with heavy machinery operations are preventable. Therefore, government regulators along with employers, safety experts, and unions started educating helpers and operators on how to work safely around the bulky equipment.

Oversized and hefty construction equipment also needs special transport handling, proper insurance, and freight carriers. Heavy equipment shipping company like Ship a Car, Inc. is experts in hauling big equipment and safely transporting them to the specified destination.

What hazards must every worker moving around heavy construction equipment be aware of?

Mechanical hazards

  • Watch for moving parts, which can reach you.
  • Equipment and machinery that eject objects can strike you.
  • Rotating shafts, shard blades, shear actions, colliding surfaces, and detachable connections are common mechanical hazards.
  • Dangers associated are severing, crushing, puncturing, and cutting.
  • Slips and falls are also risky while dodging the moving components.

Non-mechanical hazards

  • Steam releases
  • Dust
  • Radiated & conducted heat
  • Flammable atmosphere
  • Ionizing radiation
  • High-intensity lights

The health risks include lung damage, burns, and risk of cancer.

Access hazards

  • Workers without safe access around the equipment can get accidentally trapped between dangerous components.
  • Workers can get exposed to non-mechanical or mechanical hazards with unsafe access.

Access control needs proper planning of who is allowed in a hazardous zone or around equipment in operation.

Hazard mitigation steps

Hazards can be reduced with preventive measures like open communications with the workers about the hazards and steps to control. For high-order hazard control, place signage in most risk zones and prescribe safe actions to the employees exposed.

For low-order risk control, discuss with workers what kind of precautionary safety steps to take when they work around bulky powerful machinery.

Make personal protective gear compulsory. Administrative control includes standard operating procedures, which promotes safe operation and less exposure to accidents.

Reliable safety tips when working around bulky construction equipment

  • Stay outside the line-of-fire.
  • Make eye contact with the heavy equipment operator for assurance before entering the line-of-fire.
  • Use radio communication signals.
  • Have grind spotters to cover the blind spots.
  • Mark the danger zone, so anyone coming near will recognize the boundaries.
  • Workers need to keep their minds and eyes on at-hand tasks.
  • Have a dedicated entry and exit zone for equipment.
  • Maintain safety standard ‘three-point contact’, while getting on or off the heavy equipment.
  • Perform routine maintenance.
  • Everyone connected with the heavy equipment must have a clear understanding of the operator manual.

Stay safe while working around Heavy construction equipment!