An aging and growing population requires more healthcare services, fueling the need for additional hospital construction. There are hazards involved in any type of construction, but hospital construction issues are unique, especially if there are patients onsite while repairs and remodeling are going on. Just as preventative treatment can help patients from ending up in the hospital in the first place, the same holds true for keeping construction workers from ending up as patients.
Keeping It Clean
Construction worker safety is crucial on any project, but practices in certain types of hospital construction pose inherent dangers. That is why the right methodology is essential. For example, keeping patients away from construction activities might entail using temporary partitions made of drywall. This type of partition may cause as many problems as it solves. As the work progresses, the partition is demolished, generating huge amounts of dust. Even the best dust containment systems may not prove effective enough to handle the output, and construction workers may end up with serious respiratory problems. A better method is the use of temporary wall systems, which are simply put up and taken down as needed, with little or no dust generation.
It All Comes Down to Planning
Protecting workers during the construction process all comes down to detailed planning. Long before the construction workers arrive on the scene, the planners must identify all types of hazards and safety risks, and work on improving them as efficiently as possible. Workers require training in keeping themselves and patients safe. Construction equipment and materials must never affect access to the emergency room or critical care facilities. Personnel must ensure that nothing ever gets in the way of a hospital’s emergency power source.
Fall prevention is as important in hospital construction as on any other site. Any uneven surface is a potential trip and fall hazard, as are common construction elements such as scaffolding and raised work areas. Safety engineers should identify any areas on the worksite where the risk of falling is elevated, and ensure workers are warned verbally, through electronic messaging and strategically placed signage. Every crew should have a safety prep meeting prior to starting work each day. That is also an opportunity to update workers on new equipment or anything else out of the ordinary occurring on a shift.
All construction workers should have state-of-the-art safety equipment available and mandated use of it. That may include high tech helmets with chinstraps to protect the head in case of falls, avoiding the tragedy of a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Approximately one-quarter of all construction workers are fatally injured annually due to TBIs, and many more workers are permanently impaired after such injuries.
Philadelphia Construction Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Advocate for Injured Construction Workers
If you or a loved one was injured in a construction accident, you need the services of the experienced Philadelphia construction accident lawyers at DiTomaso Law. Fill out our online form or call us at 215-426-4493 to schedule an initial consultation in our office. We are centrally located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and we serve clients from the surrounding areas.