No construction business wants to deal with a stop-work order, so it’s critical to have a system in place that can immediately correct unsafe work conditions when they arise. This begins with training your workers and developing a culture that promotes workplace safety. Everyone on the project site needs to understand their role and be accountable, and safety issues need to be corrected before resuming operations. In this brief article, a stop-work order attorney in Florida will discuss how construction firms can handle unsafe work conditions by implementing an effective prevention program.
Steps to Prevent Stop-Work Orders
The reason why a project site receives a stop-work order in Florida can greatly vary. Stop-work orders stem from unsafe conditions, significant changes to the scope of work, or a variety of other reasons, like when workers are not appropriately covered under workers’ compensation insurance. In the example of unsafe work conditions, the following steps could be taken to mitigate an issue before work is required to come to a screeching halt.
1) Identify the Problem and Cease All Work
As we discussed above, a hazardous situation that poses a risk of imminent danger can occur for a variety of reasons, including defective equipment, an unsafe environment, or a particularly risky job task. The first step to stop-work order prevention is to take action by identifying the risk and removing anyone in a dangerous situation from the potential risk.
2) Perform a Risk Assessment and Determine the Next Step
Once the risk is stabilized, the next step is to perform a risk assessment to determine the severity of the potential risk. For example, ask yourself: “Does the situation need significant modifying or is it safe to proceed as originally planned?” If changes are necessary then determine what changes need to be made and when work can resume. A risk assessment should be performed during all stages of a project, but this process is critical during situations in which a stop-work order is a possibility.
3) Make the Necessary Corrections and Resume Work
Assuming changes are needed to the project, the next step is to make the necessary adjustments. Once all the safety issues are sorted out, you can resume work. Lastly, contractors should revisit the issue after it’s been corrected to not only ensure that everything passes inspection but also ensure that you can keep a close record of the actions taken and ways you can potentially improve this process in the future.
Consult a Stop-Work Order Attorney in Florida
Correcting an issue that can lead to a stop-work order is only the tip of the iceberg. Adjustments made to a project midway through can lead to disputes over the necessary steps to fix the issue. These scenarios also can result in a significant amount of finger pointing and other conflicts if not properly handled from the get-go.
Construction firms that establish a process and take appropriate corrective action will resume work much more quickly while ensuring the safety of the workers located on their jobsite. A construction attorney can greatly help firms achieve this result by performing safety audits and making sure that you are compliant with regulatory requirements. Our law firm also has experience quickly resolving stop-work orders issued to our clients.
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.