The Importance of Workplace Safety

Posted on October 12, 2022

Many safety risks haunt groundwork projects, earthwork activities, and the entire construction industry. The good news is that you can keep them at bay if you have a robust safety culture.

Dedicated safety planning saves you and your employees from multiple hazards. On top of that, safety lowers your expenses, cements your reputation, helps attract more skilled workers, and more.

What are The Most Common Construction Safety Risks?

Whether you’re dealing with earthwork, road construction, or any other type of construction, you need to keep an eye on these risks:

  • Working in elevated locations: Falling off high positions, ladders, ledges, aerial equipment, or scaffolding can be catastrophic.
  • Prolonged vibrations: Vibrating machinery can affect your employee’s joints, blood vessels, and nerves.
  • Moving machinery: Heavy-duty behemoths are parts of the construction sites. Any mishap when using them can be life-threatening.
  • Prolonged Noise: Excessive noise from large machinery and loud activities often causes hearing loss.
  • Trip and slip hazards: These risks often happen on uneven, wet, and disorganized surfaces.
  • Falling debris or objects: People caught under collapsing objects can sustain severe injuries and fatalities.
  • Electrical shock: Exposure to electricity risk comes from faulty insulation, connections, or tools.
  • Breathing risks: Dust and chemical fumes are airborne hazards that pose health issues.
  • Material handling: Moving heavy material and equipment requires proper handling to prevent joint and muscle injuries.

So What Are The Benefits Of Safety Measures In Construction Sites?

Safety comes with a perk of benefits. Let’s dive deeper into some of them:

  • Slashes The Frequency Of Work-Related Accidents

According to the ILO, construction sites worldwide witness at least 60,000 fatal accidents yearly. And OSHA says the construction industry is responsible for almost 25% of work-related fatalities and injuries.

The most common causes of accidents include getting struck, electrocution, getting trapped between objects, and falls—such depressing facts. But with robust safety policies, you can keep accidents and injuries at bay.

  • Saves Money and Profits

In 2020, the total costs of work-related accidents hit the $163.9 billion mark. A work injury or fatality skyrockets your insurance premiums.

Also, injured workers cannot perform at their best, losing valuable time. You may need to hire a replacement or postpone the project until the worker returns.

A safety culture promotes employees’ confidence to perform without fearing the worst. You can bid farewell to ballooning absenteeism or insurance costs.

  • Boosts Productivity

When a skilled worker is absent due to an injury, the remaining ones are left with more challenging work. And it takes time for replacements to fill the gap.

A worker’s injury can also spark stress, distrust, and lower morale across the entire organization. The result is reduced productivity.

  • Reduces Costs In Wages and Delays

Often, you must pay the injured worker’s wages while they recuperate at home or in the hospital. The accident can also lead to delays due to damaged resources, equipment, tools, or completed work.

You have to spend money replacing damaged equipment and re-do the work. Delays can also portray a negative brand image, leading to a loss of business opportunities.

  • Reduces Costly Investigations

According to OSHA, the company should investigate all close calls, illnesses, injuries, and fatalities. Is the incident catastrophic or severe? The workplace may have to close down for thorough investigation and corrective measures.

Closure of a worksite means delayed revenue generation. And the site work contractors or other construction authorities might face possible imprisonment or hefty fines if found negligent.

  • Cements a Positive Reputation

The labor market is increasingly tightening. And the issue was there even before COVID hit the scene. According to Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), 80% of construction firms struggle to get skilled employees. Candidates are increasingly enjoying an upper hand when it comes to bargaining. So, how can you outcompete your rivals and attract top-in-class talents?

The trick is to offer a safe and inclusive working environment.

Workplace incidents are the leading stressors for job hunters and people in general. And the pandemic proved that workers are humans with needs- not just a bundle of skills.

That means a record of work-related accidents in your company can spread like wildfire. After all, potential employees research a company before applying for a job with it.

This can hurt your chances of creating a powerful team and firm.

  • Safeguards Your Health and Insanity Too!

As you protect your workforce and company, you’re protecting yourself too. Establishing proper safety measures ensures you don’t get hurt when inspecting job sites, managing employees, or performing other daily duties.

You can also bid farewell to the mental stress and sleepless nights of handling multiple injury and fatality cases. Who wants to deal with daily legal fights and compensations instead of making more profits?

Get a Construction Company That Puts Your Safety First

When hunting for a groundwork construction company, be sure it prioritizes safety above its own profits. A professional company works with you to assess risks. It has a dedicated safety crew or a person responsible for pinpointing risks. Plus, its management can advise on eliminating or working around hazardous situations.

The company also understands that the right equipment is crucial in getting the job done and dusted safely. It comes fully equipped with appropriate ladders, aerial lifts, scaffolding, and heavy equipment.

Continuous safety training is part of a professional firm’s culture. That way, every employee can immediately identify potential risks and rush to prevent a fatality.

And that company is O.L. Thompson.

O.L Thompson is a 100+-year-old company. Our roots are deep within the Charleston, SC market. Our sitework and concrete contractors have been part of large-scale projects and developments in the Charleston, SC, area. And our safety record is fantastic- we know the importance of safety for our clients and employees.

Are you looking for a company to handle your groundwork and earthwork projects? O.L. Thompson is the company to call for a safe and professional working relationship.