GENERAL SAFETY IN THE CONSTRUCTION SITE
1. General Duties of Contractors
- Contractors should so provide and maintain workplaces, equipment, tools and machinery and so organize construction work that as far as is reasonably practicable there is no risk of accident or injury to the health of workers. In particular, construction work should be so planned, prepared and undertaken that:
i. Dangers liable to arise at the workplace are prevented as soon as possible;
ii. Excessively or unnecessarily strenuous work positions and movements are avoided.
iii. Organization of work takes into account the safety and health of workers
iv. Materials and products are used which are suitable from a safety and health point of view
- Contractors should take all appropriate precautions to protect persons present at, or in the vicinity of, a construction site from all risks which may arise from such site. Contractors should provide its workers with necessary Safety Apparel/Equipment while performing its task. Apparel such as hard hats, safety belt googles should be provided depending on the nature of work.
- Contractors should arrange for regular safety inspections by competent persons at suitable intervals of all equipment, tools, machinery, workplaces and systems of work under the control of the contractor at construction sites in accordance with national laws, regulations, standards or codes of practice. As appropriate, the competent person should examine and test by type or individually to ascertain the safety of construction machinery and equipment.
- When acquiring equipment or machinery, contractors should ensure that it takes account of ergonomic principles in its design and conforms to relevant national laws, regulations, standards or codes of practice and, if there are none, that it is so designed or protected that it can be operated safely and without risk to health.
- Contractors should provide such supervision as will ensure that workers perform their work with due regard to their safety and health.
- Contractors should assign workers only to employment for which they are suited by their age, physique, state of health and skill.
- Contractors should satisfy themselves that all workers are suitably instructed in the hazards connected with their work and environment and trained in the precautions necessary to avoid accidents and injury to health.
- Contractors should take all practicable steps to ensure that workers are made aware of the relevant national or local laws, regulations, standards, codes of practice, instructions and advice relating to prevention of accidents and injuries to health.
- Equipment, tools, machinery or workplaces in which a dangerous defect has been found not be used until the defect has been remedied.
- Where there is an imminent danger to the safety of workers, the contractor should take immediate steps to stop the operation an evacuate workers as appropriate.
- On dispersed sites where small groups of workers operate in isolation, contractors should establish a checking system by which it can be ascertained that all the members of a shift, including operators of mobile equipment, have returned to the camp or base at the close of work.
- Contractors should provide appropriate first aid, training and welfare facilities to workers and, whenever collective measures are not feasible or are insufficient, provide and maintain personal protective equipment and clothing. Contractors should also ensure access for workers to occupational health services.
2. General Rights and Duties of Construction Workers
· Workers should have the right and duty at any workplace to participate in ensuring safe working conditions to the extent of their control over the equipment and methods of work and to express views on working procedures adopted as they may affect safety and health.
· Workers should have the right to obtain proper information from the contractor regarding safety and health risks and safety and health measures related to the work processes. This information should be presented in forms and languages/dialects which the workers easily understand.
· Workers should have the right to remove themselves from danger when they have good reason to believe that there is an imminent and serious danger to their safety or health. They should have the duty so to inform their supervisor immediately.
- Workers should:
i. Cooperate as closely as possible with their employer in the application of the prescribed safety and health measures;
ii. Take reasonable care for their own safety and health and that of other persons who may be affected by their acts or omissions at work;
iii. Use and take care of personal protective equipment, protective clothing and facilities placed at their disposal and not misuse anything provided for their own protection or the protection of others;
iv. Report forthwith to their immediate supervisor, and to the workers’ safety representative where one exists, any situation which they believe could present a risk and which they cannot properly deal with themselves.
v. Comply with the prescribed safety and health measures;
vi. Participate in regular safety and health meetings.
· Except in an emergency, workers, unless duly-authorized, should not interfere with, remove, alter or displace any safety device or other appliance furnished for their protection of others, or interfere with any method or process adopted with a view to avoiding accidents and injury to health.
· Workers should not operate or interfere with plant and equipment that they have not been duly authorized to operate, maintain or use.
· Workers should not sleep or rest in dangerous places such as scaffolds, railway tracks, garages, or in the vicinity of fires, dangerous or toxic substances, running machines or vehicles and heavy equipment.
3. Safety of Workplaces
· All appropriate precautions should be taken:
1. to ensure that all workplaces are safe and without risk of injury to the safety and health of workers;
2. to protect persons present at or in the vicinity of a construction site from all risks which may arise from such site.
· All openings and other areas likely to pose danger to workers should be clearly indicated.
Means of access and egress
· Adequate and safe means of access to and egress from all workplaces should be provided, indicated where appropriate and maintained in a safe condition.
· A suitable housekeeping program should be established and continuously implemented on each construction site which should include provisions for:
1. the proper storage of materials and equipment;
2. the removal of scrap, waste and debris at appropriate intervals.
· Loose materials which are not required for use should not be placed or allowed to accumulate on the site so as to obstruct means of access to and egress from workplaces and passageways.
Precautions against the fall of materials and persons, and collapse of structures
· Adequate precautions should be taken such as the provision of fencing, look-out men or barriers to protect any person who might be injured by the fall of material, or tools or equipment being raised or lowered.
· Where necessary to prevent danger, guys, stays, or supports should be used or other effective precautions should be taken to prevent the collapse of structures or parts of structures that are being erected, maintained, repaired, dismantled or demolished.
· All openings through which workers are liable to fall should be kept effectively covered or fenced and indicated in the most appropriate manner.
Fire prevention and fire fighting
· All appropriate measures should be taken by the contractor to:
1. avoid the risk of fire;
2. control quickly and efficiently any outbreak of fire;
3. bring about a quick and safe evacuation of persons.
· Sufficient and suitable storage should be provided for flammable liquids, solids and gases.
· Secure storage areas should be provided for flammable liquids, solids and gases such as liquefied petroleum gas cylinders, paints and other such materials in order to deter trespassers.
· In confined spaces and other places in which flammable gases, vapors or dusts can cause danger:
1. only suitably protected electrical installations and equipment, including portable lamps, should be used;
2. there should be no naked flames or similar means of ignition;
3. there should be notices prohibiting smoking;
4. oily rags, waste and clothes or other substances liable to spontaneous ignition should be removed without delay to a safe place;
5. adequate ventilation should be provided.
· Regular inspections should be made of places where there are fire risks. These include the vicinity of heating appliances, electrical installations and conductors, stores of flammable and combustible materials, hot welding and cutting operations.
· Welding, flame cutting and other hot work should only be done on the orders of a competent supervisor after appropriate precautions, as required, are taken to reduce the risk of fire.
· For confined area, presence of fire fighting equipment should be visible.
· Where natural lighting is not adequate to ensure safe working conditions, adequate and suitable lighting, including portable lighting where appropriate, should be provided at every workplace and any other place on the construction site where a worker may have to pass.
· Where necessary to prevent danger, lamps should be protected by suitable guards against accidental breakage.
· The cables of portable electrical lighting equipment should be of adequate size and characteristics for the power requirements and of adequate mechanical strength to withstand severe conditions in construction operations.
4. Scaffolds and Ladders
· Where work cannot be safely done on or from the ground or from part of the building or other permanent structure, a safe and suitable scaffold should be provided and maintained or other equally safe and suitable provision should be made.
· Scaffolds should be provided with safe means of access, such as stairs, ladders or ramps. Ladders should be secured against inadvertent movement.
· Every scaffold should be properly designed, constructed, erected and maintained so as to prevent collapse or accidental displacement when properly used.
· Every scaffold and part thereof should be:
1. designed so as to prevent hazards for workers during erection and dismantling;
2. designed so that guard rails and other protective devices, platforms, put-logs, rakers, transoms, ladders, stairs or ramps can be easily put together;
3. of suitable and sound material and of adequate size and strength for the purpose for which it is to be used and maintained in a proper condition.
5. Transport, Earth-moving and Materials-handling Equipment
· All vehicles and earth-moving or materials-handling equipment should:
1. be of good design and construction taking into account as far as possible ergonomic principles particularly with reference to the seat;
2. be maintained in good working order;
3. be properly used with due regard to safety and health;
4. be operated by workers who have received appropriate training in accordance with national laws and regulations.
· The drivers and operators of vehicles and earth-moving or materials-handling equipment are used:
1. safe and suitable access ways should be provided for them;
2. traffic should be so organized and controlled as to secure their safe operation.
· Adequate signalling or other control arrangements or devices should be provided to guard against danger from the movement of vehicles and earth-moving or materials-handling equipment. Special safety precautions should be taken for vehicles and equipment when maneuvering backwards.
· The assistance of a trained and authorized signaler should be available when the view of the driver or operator is restricted. The signalling code should be understood by all involved.
· When earth-moving or materials-handling equipment is required to operate in dangerous proximity to live electrical conductors, adequate precautions should be taken, such as isolating the electrical supply or erecting overhead barriers of a safe height.
· Vehicles and earth-moving or materials-handling equipment should not be left on a slope with the engine running.
1. apply the brakes;
2. lower the blade and ripper;
3. put the shift lever in neutral.
· At the close of work bulldozers should be left on level ground.
· When a bulldozer is moving uphill the blade should be kept low.
· Bulldozer blades should not be used as brakes except in an emergency.
· Before a road roller is used, the ground should be examined for bearing capacity and general safety, especially at the edges of slopes such as embankments.
· Rollers should not move downhill with the engine out of gear.
· When a roller is not in use:
1. the brakes should be applied;
2. the engine should be put into bottom gear if the roller is facing uphill;
3. the engine should be put into bottom gear if the roller is facing uphill
4. the engine should be put into reverse if the roller is facing downhill;
5. the contact should be switched off;
6. the wheels should be blocked.
· Excavators that are designed to be used for lifting with lifting gear should be provided with a plate in the cabin and on the boom bearing a clearly legible and durable text giving the maximum safe working load of the lifting gear fitted.
· Excavators that are equipped for use as mobile cranes should:
1. be examined and tested in accordance with national laws and regulations for mobile cranes (if applicable);
2. be fitted with an automatic safe working load indicator, when practicable.