It seems like road construction never ends. Whenever you’re out, you’ll likely pass by work crew clearing the land or paving asphalt for a road project.
Road construction can take a long time, especially for long highways that stretch for kilometers. It involves dozens of construction machinery and professionals, such as thermoplastic road-marking paint contractors, and requires meticulous planning to minimize interruptions to everyday life.
Just like any construction site, a road project is also a workplace, albeit one exposed to the public. Exposure brings with it dangers for the work crew. Vehicle collisions aren’t uncommon, and utility lines can get in the way. Whether you’re a passerby or a road construction workman, it pays to know how to protect yourself while in the work zone.
1. Wear personal protective equipment
Always wear personal protective equipment when at the worksite. Because you’re working out in the open, your safety gear and accessories should be high-visibility as well. Apart from standard work gear, your vest, safety hat, and armband should be made of reflective materials.
2. Check for hazards
Always check the area for hazards before and during work. Take note of potential risks such as power lines and tree branches near and at the site. When operating power tools and heavy machinery, always follow appropriate safety procedures for use and movement and check your blind spots.
3. Work in pairs
When moving construction equipment or loading and unloading material from vehicles, assign an operator and spotter tandem. The spotter should act as a guide for the operator to ensure that no one gets hurt or no equipment is damaged.
4. Everyone should be on the same page
Everyone in the team should be able to communicate with one another without confusion. Things can get loud in the workplace, and it will be necessary to get everyone on the same page when it comes to communication signals. All team members must know how to use and interpret hand signals to ensure safety and clear communication.
5. Proper positioning
The nature of roadwork makes it doubly risky. You’re exposed to the outside world, and even with protections in place, accidents can still occur. Always have a plan for safe placement of construction equipment, lights, generators, and vehicles. If possible, keep them away from moving traffic and pedestrians.
6. Clear the area around machinery and vehicles
Never assume that the operator of the construction machinery or vehicle can see you. Whenever you’re near or approaching one, always be cautious. If possible, communicate with the operator using signals to catch his attention. Wait for his go-ahead before approaching.
7. Have a traffic plan
Ideally, you need to coordinate with the local authorities to devise a transportation plan and manage moving traffic in the area. This includes motorists, pedestrians, and construction-related vehicles and crew. The work zone should be covered with warning signs and lights to ensure motorists are kept abreast of changes in the area.
Keeping these things in mind will help ensure a safer and productive workplace. Everyone on the site, from the supervisor down to the road crew, should be educated about proper and safe work protocol. Pedestrians should also be warned of the dangers of road construction.