Hand and power tools and machinery are integral to every construction site. Looking after tools and machinery is important from a safety perspective.
The following tips will help construction personnel stay safe onsite:
People using hand and power tools may be exposed to falling, flying or splashing objects, harmful fumes or electrical hazards.
To be effective and safe for use, tools must:
• be kept in good working order,
• be regularly maintained. Electric tools require regular inspection and tagging as safe,
• be checked for damage before use — do not use damaged tools,
• have cutting edges properly sharpened if used for cutting,
• only be used for the purpose for which the tool is designed, and
• be operated according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
For operator safety:
• use dust masks when sanding, cutting or otherwise creating dust,
• use face shields when using grinders,
• use eye protection with power-cutting tools and hand tools where flying chips are a risk,
• wear good quality ear muffs when operating power tools and equipment, and
• feed all electrical tools used outside through an earth leakage protection device or an isolating transformer.
Construction site machinery includes:
• personnel and material hoists,
• cranes and lifting appliances,
• power-operated elevating working platforms, and
• earth-moving machinery.
Machinery must generally be:
• used by qualified operators,
• used with appropriate safety gear,
• be maintained in a safe operating condition,
• have a current operating certificate, if required,
• used only for the work for which it is intended, and
• be fitted with a roll-over protective structure (ROPS) in earth-moving machinery.