Rainy days are here in Nigeria. Sometimes it pours for several hours non-stop with fierce wind and storm, while it merely drizzles at other times. This is, however, not the end as more the rain is expected to get heavier in the coming months. Do you know what this means for construction sites? They will be consistently hit by rain, causing disturbance, forcing construction workers to abandon projects, damaging property and materials, and ultimately leading to delay in completion of projects.
Rain can also have a significant impact on the health of workers, certain equipment like cranes can’t be used as a result of high winds; muddy construction sites makes moving around difficult for heavy machines, activities like projects like roofing can be delayed because of wind or heat.
Therefore, a lot of planning has to be done by construction companies to forestall these negative impacts and others. More attention needs to be paid to the health of employees and ensuring work continues despite the rain. So in this article, you will get tips on planning for the rain, and how to keep your construction projects going.
Planning for the Rainy Season
You have to be proactive in getting your construction site ready for the rain as damage caused by rain can have negative impacts on the project by adding extra cost and time. Though it is not possible to project the nature of rain and storm, you can protect your site, project and materials by securing the materials and equipment on site.
Identify Safety Risks
There are many materials, machines and equipment on a construction site. During rainy season, this can be detrimental to the safety of your workers. You should be alert and aware of a change in the weather in the vicinity, analyse the risk involved and take proactive steps. One way you stay alert is paying attention to weather forecast. Contractors and supervisors should have access to timely and up-to-date weather report as relating to the location of the site.
Have a water-damage plan and resources in handy in order to identify and swift to action to address any concern that may arise before the water spreads to the vulnerable parts on the sites.
Protect your workers and materials
Once you are alert to changes in weather and the potential risk, protective sheets can be placed on scaffoldings. Loose items can also be removed and stored in protected areas. You have to tie down your structures. With these, you can protect your site and workers from injuries.
Keeping Construction Projects Going in the Rain
It is possible not to halt construction activities while rain is falling and prevent hazards like slips, falls, and health-related conditions that may arise. Some of the measures approved by OSHA include:
Use waterproof protective gears
Workers should wear fitting waterproof protective items that do not interfere with their movements such as footwear, raincoats, and strong hand protection that has a slip-proof grip while working in the rain. This will protect them from cold, chill and other health concerns.
Wear slip-resistant boots
Walkways, roofs and other areas and equipment are usually slippery during rain. Footwear or footgear capable of preventing slips should be worn by workers to prevent them from falling.
Move with caution
Contractors and supervisors should orient their workers to tread with caution on construction sites in the rain. They should work slowly and deliberately as surfaces are bound to be slippery.
Move with clear vision
Ensure that you and your workers move on the site with clear vision. Any worker who wears glasses should wipe or clean them. You can also wear a hat to prevent rain from entering your eyes. When working at night, ensure that there are enough outdoor lights to help you see clearly.
Be extra careful during thunderstorms
During heavy rains, thunder and light strike. Workers who are use cranes or work on other steel structures should be very careful and alert.
Be aware of electrical cables
Live wires and other electrical cables are very dangerous during rain. Workers should be aware and cautious around them as the rain may cause them to come alive.
Avoid deeper trenches
Wet weather causes the walls of trenches to cave in so workers should be mindful of trenches that are very deep except they are sure that it is protected by a trench box or has very solid wall.
Do not go to areas where you can’t be seen by anybody. Work with other construction workers and wear raincoats that will make you visible and identifiable.
As noted above, it is possible to keep a construction project going during rainy season. All the project manager, other team leaders and their team members have to do is to take necessary precautions to protect themselves and the materials.
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