In this four-part article, the Hillsborough County construction lawyers of Cotney Construction Law are discussing highway construction projects and safety. In the first and second sections, we discussed many of the risks present on transportation projects and how to ensure you remain safety compliant. In this part, we will discuss the vital role a site manager plays in ensuring that everyone on their jobsite remains safe.
Safety Management Procedures
When you’re in charge of a transportation project, especially one that is in a highly dangerous and congested area like a busy highway, you need to perform your due diligence well in advance of breaking ground. Here are some tips on properly supervising a highway construction project:
- Evaluating Risks: Have you identified potential risks in the surrounding work environment? Have you considered important factors that may influence you and your workforce’s ability to perform your work safely? As the project manager, you need to evaluate what can potentially go wrong. You can then develop a risk management strategy that will help reduce the likelihood of these dangers impacting your work environment.
- Training Your Workforce: Regardless of the type of construction project you are managing, you need to ensure that every member of the workforce is properly trained in establishing and maintaining a secure work zone. This is especially critical on a highway construction project. From equipment operators to extraction workers to laborers, every single construction professional needs to understand and comply with safety procedures.
- Monitoring Traffic: As we discussed previously, struck-by-a-vehicle deaths are a major concern on highway construction projects. Every highway construction project needs the appropriate signage, barriers, and flaggers in place well in advance of the work zone to alert motorists to drive with caution. There also needs to be a buffering system in place to seperate your workforce from heavy traffic areas. Flaggers need to be visible and precisely located to assist with controlling the traffic flow. Lastly, workers should always be facing oncoming traffic when performing their job tasks.
- Work Zone Traffic Flow: Although it’s easy to be focused on the motorists traveling at high speeds next to the work zone, it’s important that project managers remember that the majority of transportation accidents occur internally and involve work vehicles or equipment. Every highway jobsite needs to have established entry and exit points for the work zone. When equipment needs to be moved to another area of the site or backed up, it’s critical to have strict procedures that everyone obeys.
For more information on highway construction safety, please read the final part.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.