As of June 1st hurricane season has officially begun on the Atlantic coast of the United States. Despite the name, hurricane season is not only the season for hurricanes. It is also the season for tropical storms and depressions. These kinds of storms can have major consequences for a construction site if they are not anticipated and prepared for effectively.
The first step to securing your construction site and ensuring the safety of your workers is to communicate. Communication is important even before any storm is on the forecast. Communication in this setting refers to making sure that everyone on the site is aware of your emergency procedures in case of a storm. In the case of an emergency such as a hurricane or tropical storm, having everyone on the same page could save you a lot of time and money later on. Now that it is hurricane season it is important to gather your team and communicate any safety procedures clearly.
Watch the Weather
Watching the weather means monitoring weather conditions, so that if a hurricane or tropical storm is on the way you and your team can begin the necessary safety precautions. This step is vital, because without sufficient warning it can be hard to prepare for a storm safely. Being aware of the possibility of a storm by monitoring the conditions can help alert you in time. Any preparations or steps taken to prevent damage during a hurricane or tropical storm could be useless if they are not started in time.
Heavy equipment can be very dangerous during a hurricane or tropical storm. It is important to remember to take steps to secure anything that could be affected by high speed winds. Some common pieces of equipment found on most construction sites that could be affected by high speed winds during a storm are: Portable bathrooms, dumpsters, tables, and building materials. These items could be very dangerous in high winds if not secured before hand. Other, larger, items such as cranes and vehicles should also be secured in order to prevent accidents during hurricane conditions.
Checking any Damages
After a storm has passed it is important to asses any damages on the construction site. Although the primary danger in these situations is the storm itself, the aftermath can be just as dangerous. Many times structures and heavy appliances could have been moved or damaged during a storm and could fall at any moment. This possibility means that checking for damages on site after a storm should be done with great care and attention to detail.
These were a few suggestions for staying safe during hurricane season.We hope that you and your team are prepared in the case of a storm!
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Source: Construction Dive