When construction equipment is rumbling around a project, you've got to watch your step. If both construction workers and equipment operators keep their eyes open, no one's going to get hurt. Following are ways to help you maintain a healthy respect for cranes, dozers, excavators and trucks:
Never take for granted that equipment operators see you.
Never depend on hearing a horn or other warning signals; they might be lost in the general noise around a project. Never use cell phones or headphones that may cause a distraction or limit your ability to hear warning signals.
Equipment shouldn't be backed up without someone to check the blind spots and give signals; nevertheless, keep in the clear whenever equipment is traveling backwards, as that is when most equipment accidents happen.
Swinging counterweights often create a dangerous pinch-point. The swing radius of equipment must be barricaded to prevent exposure.
Never hitch a ride on the running board - it's fatally easy to fall under moving equipment.
No riding on top of loaded trucks; the load might shift, and you might not have enough overhead clearance in a tight spot.
Never walk alongside moving equipment. Keep in the clear in case the unit suddenly turns your way, or slides, or the load shifts.
Stay out from under loads on cranes or hoists. Use established walkways and avoid shortcuts.
Maintain a minimum 10’ clearance between equipment and overhead power lines. If the boom of a unit ever hits a power line, keep away from the frame of the unit and the load cables.
Don’t approach the cab of any equipment when the boom is raised. Wait for the operator to lower the load.
Never lubricate, clean or work on a machine that's in operation. Stop the machine and lock it out. Never remove a guard.
Construction equipment is husky, heavy, and extremely unhealthy to tangle with. Always assume that the operator doesn't see you and doesn't know you're around. Always assume that it’s up to you to keep in the clear.
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