The 4 Worst Construction Hazards and How Signage Can Prevent Them

by Drue Townsend
Construction safety sign

Photo Credit: Elliott Brown via Flickr

Along with creating the world’s greatest structures, construction workers also face some of the greatest risks. The combination of powerful machinery and large-scale projects with a hectic and demanding environment makes construction among the most dangerous industries in the country.

One of the most basic tools of safety, construction hazard signs play a vital role in reducing the number of injuries and fatalities from construction accidents.

In the spirit of National Safety Month, FASTSIGNS is calling attention to the 4 worst construction hazards and how construction hazard signs can prevent these all-too-common accidents.

  1. Scaffolding
    Allowing for stability and access to high objects, poorly constructed scaffolding or misuse of scaffolding can lead to deadly falls. Visual communications with reminders for proper scaffolding procedures can remind workers to stay safe.
  1. Falls
    The deadliest of construction hazards, falls are often the product of overlooking safety precautions including construction hazard signs.
  1. Ladders and stairways
    Using a faulty or task-inappropriate ladder and slippery or cluttered walking surfaces accounts for almost 25,000 on-site injuries every year.
  1. Trenching
    Digging, moving and reshaping large segments of land can produce instability, causing dangerous collapses. Signage can remind workers of vital safety precautions such as always having an exit route, keeping spoils two feet back from the edge and maintaining the maximum allowable slopes for excavations.

At the foundation of these construction hazards is a lack of awareness. Construction workers are trained professionals, but human error is an unfortunate part of any workplace. The high stakes involved in a construction site accident make caution and attention to detail incredibly important.

One of the most effective strategies for overcoming that lack of awareness is posting construction hazard signs. The signs often are the most prominent and alarming indicators of danger to the worker. The signs serve as a constant reminder that a specific working situation requires specific precautions.

The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) lists a whole host of guidelines and specifications (size, color, size of text, etc.) regarding the production of hazard signs, and with good reason. A uniform network of signs ensures a consistency in communication to the worker that could be the difference between life and death.

FASTSIGNS understands the complex and sometimes confusing regulations and is committed to designing and producing signs that meet code requirements, and most importantly, keep employees safe.


Resources:

https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/cfoi/cftb0277.pdf
https://www.nsc.org/act/events/Pages/national-safety-month.aspx
https://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3252/3252.html
https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=standards&p_id=9794