Safety Matters: Tips for Contractors Working Outdoors in Summer Heat
Safety Matters to us and making sure contractors take extra care during those long summer hours is of utmost importance.
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Written by Josh Lindberg on July 5, 2022
Once again, summertime is here. Some get the summertime blues and others have a blast. Either way, if you are working outdoors, safety is always the most important aspect of the job. There are steps that every owner, foreman, and laborer can take to maintain a high level of competence and safety on a job.
First, it is important to stay hydrated. Ideally, you should be drinking about 1 oz of water per pound of body weight daily. While working outside in the heat, you should be drinking 12 oz every 30 minutes to avoid potential dehydration.
Beyond staying hydrated, electrolytes are also important. There are numerous sports drinks, such as Gatorade or Body Armor that can be ingested to keep sugar and sodium at optimum levels to maintain your body’s endurance throughout the day. In recent years, companies have manufactured additives for liquids that can help further increase electrolyte levels. One additive that we tested that provided optimal absorption was “Liquid-IV”. Underlying health issues, taste, or even texture can affect which brand you prefer but I would highly recommend trying something to ensure you are staying hydrated.
During the summer months, heat strokes are also an area of great concern. Heat strokes can cause severe, long term damage to your well-being and also has the potential of causing death. Please protect yourself and your coworkers this summer by taking the time to rest and rehydrate.
Safety should always be at the forefront of every job you undertake. Beyond hydration, proper safety equipment is also paramount. Summer months bring heat so a good pair of gloves along with sunscreen help ensure worker safety. People tend to work longer hours in the summer so the amount of time spent on your feet also increases. Always check footwear for proper traction as they can also wear down like a set of tires. Slips and falls happen every day and we recommend taking these steps to reduce potential injury. Proper eye protection is also key. If working outside, safety glasses that are tinted can help reduce glare and eye strain.
If you follow this blog you may remember that in the winter I wrote an article about properly maintaining your equipment to ensure that during peak months your equipment was performing properly for maximum worker safety. If you missed it, you can read it here: Helical Pile Equipment Maintenance Checklist. There may be more time for maintenance in the winter, but it’s never a bad time to take time to inspect your equipment to make sure your workers aren’t at risk when out on a jobsite.
The key to any safety program is to take small steps to ensure big falls do not happen. In many industries, quality laborers are in short supply and you must take steps to ensure your most valuable assets are performing optimally. Like the old saying goes, “the devil is in the details.” Clearly, OSHA regulations, product disclaimers, and laws exist to keep our workers safe, but it’s important to pay attention to the little things that still have the potential to add up to serious consequences.
Safety Matters: CHANCE helical piers are the best represented products in the helical market but it is only that way because of our highest valued asset, our people. Make sure you are doing everything you can this summer to take care of your people.
Josh Lindbergh is the President of Helical Concepts, Inc., a CHANCE Distributor for the south-central United States based in Wylie, Texas. Reach out to HCI or your local distributor for product, installation, or design support.
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