A construction project is about more than simply getting the job done. For project managers, in particular, it’s also about making sure that the job is done as safely as possible. Although we’re more consciously aware of the risks that come with construction in terms of injuries, there is an inherent risk that comes with working outside in potentially extreme temperatures as well.
Of course, the safety of employees isn’t the only thing to take into consideration. Companies can run into legal trouble, especially with OSHA, if they do not ensure that their employees are as safe as possible. This is why it’s imperative that you take the right steps to make sure that all construction workers are protected from the elements as they work. What does this entail? Let’s look into it further below.
1. Portable Outdoor Air Conditioning
Project managers of construction sites must toe the line between creating an efficient space that lacks obstructions and offering temporary cooling for employees. This is often done by providing a rental air conditioner. An air conditioner that can be hosted outdoors and on-site is more useful in terms of efficiency than buying lots of smaller fans. Furthermore, while larger machines in their own right, portable air conditioner rentals are actually less obstructive than the amount of smaller fans that it would take to cool a construction site properly.
While it’s impossible to keep an outdoor space completely cool at all times, it’s important that workers have spaces nearby where they can relax and cool off. Furthermore, you should make sure that they are aware of the three most common heat-related syndromes: heat exhaustion, heat cramps, and heatstroke. Although heat cramps are the mildest issues, they can still be quite painful, and signs of more extreme symptoms to come.
2. Temporary Heating For Construction
Although we often think of construction as something that happens in a warm climate, with overheating being the primary concern, any project manager knows that construction happens all year round. Furthermore, in certain climates it’s much more likely that employees will be working in colder temperatures, and therefore will need temporary heating for construction. Temporary heating ensures that employees avoid the numbness that can come with the cold, as well as hypothermia, and even frostbite.
Yes, construction workers can get frostbite while working in cold weather. Consider that many are not able to work properly while wearing heavy gloves or fully obstructing their faces. Though working in extreme cold should be avoided, sometimes it is necessary for construction to be done under these circumstances, and heaters ensure that employees are kept as safe as possible. Furthermore, the warmer an area is, the less chance there will be that ice will develop. This is yet another reason to prioritize temporary heating for construction.
Working in humid conditions is, for one thing, incredibly uncomfortable. Workers will become sweatier faster when temperatures are humid. Comfortable workers are happy workers, and happy workers tend to turn out better construction than unhappy ones.
For that reason alone, a dehumidifier is a good idea. However, a dehumidifier also wards off dampness in small spaces, therefore reducing the risk of mold developing. It also reduces the presence of allergens and irritants that could cause workers to cough and sneeze. A dehumidifier isn’t necessarily an urgent need as temporary cooling or temporary heating for construction, but it’s a good thing to have on hand for such projects.
4. Wind Barriers
There is a difference between dangerously high wind levels, and wind levels that are safely workable but distracting. For both the safety and comfort of your employees, you should have barriers blocking wind from disturbing them as they work. Make sure that these do obscure their sightlines, but otherwise, they’re good investments.
Remember that investing in your workers’ safety and comfort is key to accomplishing a project on time and to the standards of quality that you’re looking for. Don’t subject them to unsafe working conditions because you want to save money.