Hazards of working around heavy equipment

Hazards of working around heavy equipment

Construction employees know they’re always at risk for certain workplace hazards, however having a full understanding of those risks and taking the right precaution helps. The saying “safety first” is no joke, especially when it comes to jobs that require working around heavy equipment. Certain large construction equipment you might find yourself around include cranes, bulldozers, maintainers, front loaders, dump trucks, skid steers, and excavators. Hydraulic attachments such as ripperes, brushcutters, saws, augers, and buckets can also be dangerous.

Whether you’re a worker, operator, or even a pedestrian, it’s important to pay attention to signage and know the best practices when it comes to safety. Proper risk management helps point out all hazards before and during a project. Highlighting risks prevents injury, but it is also necessary to ensure the equipment is in good shape before using. Here are common hazardous incidents tips to help you stay safe while working.

Incidents that can happen around large construction equipment

You can’t be protected from hazards if you don’t know what hazards to look for. Common incidents include falling, getting ran over, electrocution, and struck-by and caught-between accidents.

Falls are probably the most common, as many construction employees work on heightened platforms or near edges. Not only that, but anything above ground level is considered “working at height.” This means anywhere where a worker could fall off an edge, including multi-level buildings, beams, and other barriers. Wearing a safety harness is recommended. 

The weight and speed at which heavy machinery operates can be fatal if you’re not properly educated on working around them. Wearing high-visibility clothing so the operator can easily see you is recommended.

The odds of getting electrocuted are low, but never zero. These injuries are not always fatal, but you can still get seriously burnt. Properly shutting off power sources, noticing frayed wires, and identifying underground and above ground power lines is necessary.

Struck-by accidents are when a worker is hit by a moving object. This can be anything from getting knocked in the head with a crane or flying debris. Making eye contact with those on the ground before operating a machine and ensuring all workers have proper protection such as helmets and goggles must happen.

Caught-between accidents occur when you leave yourself no place out, causing you to have to escape danger. This can also include a worker getting squished in between a building and a machine, or being stuck in between walls and pipes. Always being aware of your surroundings and working in groups can prevent this type of accident.

How to operate safely

Planning ahead and ensuring everyone is on the same page is a surefire way to manage the risk and stay safe on the job. Adequate training before using large construction equipment is a necessity for all construction employees. Best practices include the use of signage, having spotters, and communication. Require workers to wear safety harnesses, goggles, helmets, and visible colors like yellow and orange.

Set your employees up for success and make sure they have access to operating manuals and any safety training that may be available. The more you are around construction equipment, the more you will become familiar with the best practices. Take time to understand the rules and regulations, complete inspection checklists, and be alert on the job.

Lyon Auction is your go-to for used heavy machinery, and we’ll make sure the equipment you leave with at our auctions meets safety standards, as well as quality. Contact us today to learn more about our upcoming auctions.


Previous Page