How To Create A Construction Safety Plan
Does your company have a construction safety plan? Here’s what a good plan should include.
435 U.S. construction workers die every year from construction-related injuries.
Most construction fatalities result from the “Fatal Four” incidents: falls, being caught between objects, being struck by an object, and electrocution.
If you regularly manage or operate a construction company, it is important to have a construction safety plan in place in order to keep your workers safe at all times.
In fact, effective safety plans can be the key to preventing worker fatalities on your site.
This is particularly the case if you work with subcontractors or third party individuals who may not have had safety training prior to working.
In this post, we’ll look closely at how to craft a construction safety plan that works for everyone involved.
Read on for insight!
1. Choose the Right Format
No two construction safety plans are alike.
Many companies craft inadequate safety plans all the time. Others create highly-detailed manuscripts that must accompany every company bid.
Whatever the case, you have control over the format and the layout of your construction safety plan. In general, it’s helpful to choose an outline format.
Or you can use a free template from At Your Business.
Additionally, it’s essential to be as detailed as possible when creating a plan. A detailed plan can ensure that your workers are informed at every step of the way, which is critical for preventing accidents.
Make sure you and several other management members have access to this plan at all times.
What’s more, make sure that any changes made to this document are communicated to the appropriate staff.
2. Implement Site-Specific Details
Every construction safety plan should be unique given the nature of a certain project’s layout and hazards.
We recommend building a safety plan that includes a section containing key information about individual projects. This portion of your plan should adapt to each project and reference specific safety hazards unique to certain sites.
This should be the only changeable portion of your safety plan.
All other details about medical procedures in the event of an accident, company policies, and general safety requirements should be consistent between individual project-specific plans.
Perform a thorough inspection of project sites to identify potential safety hazards and risk factors. Detail the results of this inspection in this site-specific portion of the safety plan.
Clearly identify the hazards and precautions needed to avoid these hazards.
3. Address Safety Representatives and Medical Guidelines
Workers should know that, by law, their supervisor is responsible for their safety at all times throughout a given project.
Your construction safety plan should identify project safety representatives and contact information.
It should also include detailed guidelines for medical procedures to follow in the event of an accident. These should include who to call in case of an emergency.
They should also include steps to take for certain kinds of accidents, such as falls, electrocution, tool injuries, and flying object injuries.
This is a very important component of any construction safety plan.
4. Include Company Standards for Inspections
Your company likely already has some policies in place when it comes to performing inspections at construction sites. It’s important to reference these in your safety plan.
You do not have to spell out all of your standards and company policies word-for-word in your plan. But do state document or policy titles in the plan itself for employees to reference later if they wish.
The most important thing to communicate in this portion of your plan is the fact that you will inspect sites prior to project launches. Inspections can promote worker safety overall.
5. Identify General Safety Regulations
Your safety plan should also include a section detailing general safety regulations for all sites. In many cases, employees will have already seen these regulations in training briefs and signs around the workplace.
These general safety regulations should reference construction site attire, contact information, tool and machine use, and inspection details.
Check out our post on keeping employees safe at a construction site to learn more about general safety regulations.
It’s also important to emphasize in this section of your plan how and when workers can communicate safety concerns to supervisors. There are certain safety concerns that fall outside of general regulations after all.
6. Provide Relevant Training
If your company requires employees and other workers to undergo safety training before hire, describe the nature of this training in your safety plan.
What’s more, any relevant training you do provide should consistently reference your construction safety guide.
If your company does not provide relevant training, or if you hire subcontractors, it’s important to reference additional training opportunities in your safety plan. In some cases, construction companies will refer workers to outside workshops or training sessions prior to hire.
7. Discuss Equipment
Every construction company handles a variety of equipment and machinery. You don’t have to discuss equipment at length in your construction safety plan.
However, it is important to succinctly describe the nature of the equipment your workers will be using. Mention safety mechanisms in place for specific tool use.
Discuss the use of highly specialized equipment, too, such as dielectric testing equipment.
If your company regularly performs equipment inspections and tests, reference how and when these will be performed.
8. Reference Reviews and Reports
All accidents should be reported to the appropriate personnel so that you can keep accurate documentation. Include a sample accident report in your safety plan and specify the details of filling one out.
It’s also key to identify who will be reviewing these reports and whether or not your company aims to keep them confidential.
Your Construction Safety Plan
The most important thing to keep in mind when crafting a safety plan is your workers’ knowledge. While many parts of a safety plan may feel tedious, make sure you create one with your workers and their safety in mind.
Create an outline that incorporates key information on inspections, general safety regulations, equipment use, and more. Always include a portion that can be modified to address site-specific safety hazards and precautions.
At Your Business is your ultimate resource when it comes to handling small business tasks. Check out our small business guide here!