A construction worker has died after being struck by a tree on a construction site in Scottsdale. The accident happened as the tree was being moved together with other debris. The investigation is underway however it teaches us a valuable lesson about the danger of debris on construction sites, the need for good housekeeping and safety when transporting and moving debris and building materials.
Read what happened according to a post on www.SFGate.com:
A construction accident in Scottsdale has claimed the life of a worker.
Scottsdale police say a 49-year-old worker was fatally injured Thursday when he was struck by a tree.
Police say the accident occurred at a former hotel site as debris was being removed.
The victim’s identity hasn’t been released.
Workplace safety officials will investigate.
The planning and mobilization of raw material, debris and equipment is an important aspect of construction work and it needs to be carried out in a manner that does not present a risk to workers’ safety. Because it is a potentially dangerous task, it is a hazard that needs to be identified and assessed by site safety planners. If it cannot be eliminated or substituted by a less dangerous activity, it must be minimised as much as possible.
Bulldozers move dirt and debris, and front-end loaders scoop up the material and load it onto dump trucks. These dump trucks transport the material to either another location on the jobsite or take the material offsite for disposal. All of these undertakings can be threatening to worker safety and needs to be planned properly. Not only do construction materials have to be handled safely for construction jobsite safety, debris and waste must be disposed of properly.
This incident also highlights the need for good housekeeping but also safety when conducting these housekeeping tasks. Getting rid of waste and other used construction material can be a challenge. Don’t let the waste debris pile up.
Post signs warning of the hazard of falling materials at each level. Don’t allow removal of the dropped material until workers are done tossing it from the higher level. This will require communication among employees on different levels.
Principal contractors should provide containers for the collection and separation of waste, trash, oily and used rags and other refuse. If the containers need covers make sure they have them. Finally, comply with local fire regulations when burning waste material or debris.
Proper material handling and storage helps prevent fires and protects employees from being crushed by falling or shifting debris.
Also remember that PPE should be utilised to minimise the severity of being hit by debris or building materials on construction sites. Although PPE are the last resort in the safety process, they can prevent or reduce the impact of being struck by materials on site. It is important that employers provide workers with personal protective equipment and ensure that they are trained on how to use this equipment effectively.