Excavation refers to the action of removing rock and soil from an area, usually so that can be prepared for a construction project. Excavation might be necessary for the landscape or to install underground utilities. Sometimes excavation can be dangerous – especially when it’s done without the right team, proper training, necessary safety precautions, and protective systems. Before starting an excavation project, it’s important to remember that the rest of the construction project and its success relies on safe digging practices.
Safe Digging Practices in Excavation Construction Projects
Here’s how to approach safe digging practices in excavation construction projects.
The first step to safe construction is a proper assessment of the site. A professional site assessment involves a comprehensive look at the terrain and its merits, as well as any potential obstacles that might arise during construction.
A thorough site assessment is phase one. No construction phase can continue without a site assessment that has properly established all the potential obstacles associated with the area you intend to build on.
Where there is excavation work to be done, an additional site assessment might be required to establish the structural integrity of what’s underground as well as what surrounds the excavation site.
The use of safety gear is considered essential for any construction project. In fact, it’s just as important when it comes to excavation jobs. Before any planning has been done, make sure that employees remain adequately protected against all obstacles. Protecting workers must remain a priority from the start to the end of the building project.
All safety equipment should be of the highest standard and the best that you can afford for your staff. Not all safety equipment is made alike! Don’t risk the safety of your employees or the integrity of your company.
Clear Area Stipulations
Clear stipulations for which area of the construction site is to be used for excavation, must be an essential part of your project. Safe digging can only be performed when people know exactly which part of the construction site will be excavated.
Mark out important areas. This will help to ensure that someone can’t just accidentally walk into one of these construction or digging sites without permission. Marking important areas isn’t just for the safety of employees, it is also meant for bystanders who find themselves close to the construction site (and might be curious).
Warnings around the construction site seem like overkill, however, basic safety warnings should never be underestimated – or skipped out on by a foreperson. Onsite warnings are important, and might just be the difference between someone remembering an essential safety tip – or someone forgetting and endangering the entire construction team.
Display all standard warnings around the construction site, as well as special warnings where any digging is to happen.
Constant monitoring is the best way to make sure that things are okay for the entire duration of your construction and excavation project. Without a constant eye being kept on what’s going on, how can anyone really know if the site remains safe?
Coordination is important for safe excavation. In order to coordinate, someone should always be supervising.
It seems obvious, but you wouldn’t believe how many people have turned their back on a construction site for a few minutes to come back and find that something disastrous has happened.
Digging can change the integrity of any building site as the job is being done. Emergencies, accidents, and changes of plan can all occur in an average day’s work on a large construction site. Constant monitoring is how you can ensure all proper safety precautions are being taken.
No Site Obstructions
There should be no obstructions around the construction site, even though there might be things moving around from one place to the next – including heavy equipment and people.
Introduce clear signs along with walkways to make your digging site a safe place for all. Secondary to this, supervision (as mentioned above) can make sure that everything continues to run safely.
Enough Walkway Room
No construction site can function when people are constantly bumping into one another.
Make sure that there’s enough room to move freely around your digging site. Remember to account for larger types of equipment that might have to move past.
April is Safe Digging Month
April is National Safe Digging Month. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, warrants a call to Nebraska811 to locate any potential underground utilities before putting a shovel down.
PSC Construction – Excavation Contractors Omaha, NE
Excavating | Site Development and Preparation | Underground Utilities | Location Mapping & Hydro-Excavation
PSC Construction in Omaha provides a full range of services, performed according to your specifications. Regardless of the complexity of the project, the scope, or the timeline, PSC Construction ensures you have the foundation you need to safely and successfully move forward. Contact PSC Construction today to see why we’re one of the most trusted resources for location mapping and hydro-excavation, underground utilities, site development and preparation, and excavation in Omaha.