Why is Health and Safety so Important for the Construction Sector?
Every profession has varying degrees of dangers within it – there’s no running away from that fact! Some sectors stand out more than others when it comes down to the risks involved within them – one of these is construction work. However risky the job may seem, most potential dangers can be prevented if proper health and safety protocols are followed.
Responsibility for safety & health concerns related to work lies with both the employer and the employees alike. Employers need to acknowledge and analyse all health & safety risks associated with their work and take preventive measures accordingly. Employees need to take the necessary precautions themselves, knowing the possible hazards that could harm themselves or others. But in the sector of construction, why is having adequate health and safety measures so important?
The information from this article has been taken from the HSE, Mates in Mind and SMCL website.
1) Protect Human Life
It goes without saying that the importance of health and safety in construction is, when it comes down to it, to protect human life. The industry can be hit with strict deadlines and tight turnarounds, but cutting corners on safety to save time can cause irreparable damage to both the lives of employees and the business.
Construction sites are ever-changing, which means new risks can arise at any time. Keeping up to date with health and safety, as well as minimising potential work-related illnesses, is vital for the sector. Some work-related illnesses that construction workers are more susceptible to are occupational deafness, dermatitis, and carpal tunnel.
2) Improve well-being
It’s not enough to just protect from accidents when considering health and safety. It’s also vital to look after the well-being of construction workers. The Mates in Mind charity highlights that the construction industry is a stressful culture and that it can impact employees’ mental health. The job itself can be both physically and mentally exhausting. Looking after the well-being of workers will help contribute to the successful running of health and safety procedures and promote a positive and caring environment.
For more, read our article on mental health in construction.
3) Legal and Regulatory Compliance
It is the legal responsibility to follow health and safety procedures. HSE is Britain’s national regulator, and its aim is to protect people from potential dangers. Their guidance and procedures are there to be followed so that employees remain safe while at work. Failure to comply can result in legal action. They also have the power to shut down a site if they deem it too unsafe to work.