1. Use tools with the latest safety technology and keep this equipment well maintained
Keeping tools maintained and using the latest safety technology is one of the easiest ways to reduce the amount of accidents on a construction site. Selecting safe tools (that are appropriate for the job at hand) and maintaining them well not only means there is less chance of injury, but it is more efficient as consistently safe tools directly improves productivity, as workers have less worry over using faulty or dangerous equipment.
A common injury across the sector is Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS), which occurs when employees are exposed to high levels of vibration, usually from using powerful hand tools over a prolonged period of time. It may seem logical to assume that the best tool to avoid HAV would have the lowest vibration value, however, this is not the case.
When tool performance is factored in, workers can often experience less vibration using a tool with a higher vibration value due to much faster completion of the task at hand - meaning that the safest tool isn’t always the most obvious one. This is just one example of how carefully selecting safe tools can not only reduce the risk of accident, but improve productivity.
However, curating a selection of safe tools isn’t enough - they must be maintained to an excellent standard. This can be done by putting a digitised asset management system in place that keeps track of tools so that certifications are up to date and both the tool and the person using it can be tracked in case an accident occurs.
If a tool does break, it's a good idea to ensure that safe spares are made available and the broken tool fixed quickly with effective fleet management.
By doing this, you will not only raise employee satisfaction through workers that feel safe and valued, but reduce the risk of accidents significantly.