8-20-Ken's-Tip
Contractor Tips of the Month, News

Masonry Safety: Staying Safe on the Jobsite

Safety is essential in any industry. Whether you are working on a masonry jobsite, working at heights or working in a construction zone, having the right tools on hand matters. Staying safe on jobsites doesn’t have to be easier said than done, though.

My work takes me to many types of jobsites. I consult with project managers, safety managers and workers to see what type of tools they need and desire. When it comes to masonry work, I know firsthand that it is a physically demanding job. Along with those demands, masonry work also presents high risks for injuries.

The data backs up this notion. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, masonry construction is, in fact, a trade that has one of the highest risks with a non-fatal incident rate of 191.5 per 10,000 workers.

That’s why I’d like to focus on jobsite safety for masonry work.

 

The Four Hazards

OSHA has pinpointed the four hazards that often produce red flags during inspections. Specifically on masonry jobsites, these hazards include:

  1. Fall Protection
  2. Electrocution Hazards
  3. Accidents involving falling materials or injuries from heavy equipment, also known as Struck By
  4. Caught-In or Caught-Between risks involving equipment

Primarily, though, the leading cause of fatal injuries on masonry jobsites is falls from scaffolds, ladders, open-sided floors and roofs.

That’s why each and every one of your workers should not only wear but understand the importance of fall protection and safety equipment.

 

Increasing Safety on Masonry Jobsites

You need fall protection equipment whenever you are working at heights, no exceptions. OSHA requires fall protection any time workers are exposed to a fall of at least 4 feet. The guidelines for fall protection are very specific and continue to evolve over time in order to enhance safety. Know the OSHA guidelines inside and out to ensure you are in compliance and doing your best to keep your workers safe.

In addition, eye protection is also crucial. Every worker should wear safety glasses or a form of eye protection. In some cases, it may also be necessary to provide full-face shields for protection when sanding, chipping and grinding.

And, don’t forget about hearing protection. You know firsthand that hearing problems are commonly associated with masonry work. Acquire disposable earplugs and even full earmuff protection when your workers are in enclosed areas. Pay close attention to how the ear protection is inserted, too. For the best protection, your workers should be placing their earplugs fairly deep inside the ear canals.

Simply put, it’s essential that you are planning ahead and investing in safety equipment that meets or exceeds ANSI and OSHA requirements. We all want your workers to feel safe on jobsites. That begins with you.

At Malta Dynamics, we are happy to help you find just the right fall protection equipment you need for your masonry jobsite. In addition, our comprehensive website includes fall protection and rescue plans, checklists and more to further assist you in ensuring a safe environment.