No matter how small the renovations are, once they start your home is considered a construction site. This means that it has to respect certain safety guidelines and protocols to protect your property, workers, neighbors, pedestrians and your family. Accidents may still happen but their severity will be lesser and the damage small or none.
On the other hand, if an injury happens during the renovations you may be deemed responsible as the owner of the property. So, here are safety features you need to consider when renovating your home to help you stay ahead of any possible issues.
Before you hire a contractor, ask around how they run a construction site. If possible, visit them at their current job and take a look around before you decide they’ll be renovating your home. The site must be well-organized and tidy to avoid accidents like tripping, cuts and electrical shocks. This means all the equipment and tools need to be stored safely away after the working day is over.
However, during the working hours, everything needs to be in the right place without wires and tools lying around. Equipment needs protection from the weather especially during extreme conditions like hot summers and freezing winters. Keys for the vehicles and premises should always be secured at the end of shift to prevent theft and unauthorized access.
Authorized personnel only
To keep the renovation site safe, you should talk with the contractor about who can have access to it. Make sure that the contractor only allows authorized personnel to enter the construction site. This can be your family members and friends you approved, but also the contractor’s employees who have the expertise to be there.
If the site is dangerous for non-professional personnel, then always listen to your contractor and avoid sending people there unless necessary. All workers must undergo safety training to ensure that the renovations don’t endanger human life and property.
Protective gear is mandatory
When it comes to protective gear, wearing it is non-negotiable. The workers need to wear hardhat as well as anyone who enters the renovation site regardless if they are family members or part of the construction team. Gloves and safety glasses are also an integral part of protective gear since they will protect the workers from burns, cuts and debris getting into eyes.
During night works, all personnel must wear reflective high visibility safety vests so they are easy to spot even during low lighting conditions. Mask protects against dust, toxic chemicals and dangerous particles, while face shield protects the wearer from flying debris and hazardous liquid splashes. There is appropriate protective clothing for certain positions like electricians and welders, as well as earplugs to protect the workers from excessive noise.
First-aid kits at the ready
Both the homeowner and the contractor should have a first-aid kit with up-to-date provisions in case of medical emergencies. Having them in place can make a difference between life and death, even when paramedics are on their way. However, knowing how to use these medicines and medical devices properly is also important.
Therefore, all workers and other personnel should receive appropriate first aid training like CPR, placing a tourniquet and immobilizing the injured site, to name a few. Additionally, they should know how to position an injured person and what not to do, like removing objects lodged in the wound before the ambulance arrives.
Properly erected scaffolding
To do their jobs precisely and safely, workers need solid footing. Properly erected scaffolding will allow them to reach the highest points of your home and to securely execute the works. Providing cherry picker for hire will eliminate the use of unstable ladders and help them work safely on the gutters and roofing.
Using scaffolding and cherry pickers will lower the risk of collapsing and falling from the structure, as well as prevent potentially life-threatening situations. Workers who erect the scaffolding or operate the cherry picker should have appropriate training to provide a stable ground for their colleagues.
Display warning signs
Since renovations have turned your home into a construction site, you need to visibly mark it. Place signs that will warn your neighbors and pedestrians to keep their distance and about the potential dangers of getting close. Use safety tape to mark dangerous areas or to create a barrier around the renovation site which will warn people to stay away.
Even within the site, workers should display warning signs with information on potential electrical hazards, wet ground, chemicals and other dangers. Also, if your workers operate heavy machinery, use displays to inform personnel to wear protective gear in their proximity. The same applies when it comes to vehicles like bulldozers and forklifts, so people don’t accidentally step in their way and get hurt.
In the end
These safety features are the basics you need to consider when renovating your home, as well as work together with the contractor to make sure they are fully implemented. Even if putting safety first prolongs the renovation, you should make sure that everything is taken care of properly and following regulations. After all, caring for the wellbeing of people in direct and indirect contact with the renovation site should always be a priority.
Author – Ron Wolf