Sep 03, 2018
Be Prepared for Accidents and Injuries
September is National Preparedness Month. Is your crew prepared in the event of an accident or injury.
If the unthinkable occurs, you should know exactly what to do. Practice a clearly defined emergency plan to prevent a bad situation from getting worse. Knowing what you need to do will make you more comfortable on the job site and help you stay level headed throughout an emergency.
Here are a few things you need to do:
- Know where the First-Aid kit is and know who is in charge of First-Aid.
- Add emergency counter-measures, like a pilot car or giving the flagger an air horn as a last effort to get a distracted driver’s attention and the attention of crew members
- Have the phone number and address of the nearest hospital to your work zone
- Remind workers often of what to do in the case of an accident.
You know that 911 is the emergency number, but sometimes the plan requires you to throw the injured person in the work truck and drive him directly to get help. Prioritize emergencies before they happen. If a fellow sprains his ankle, you can drive him to the nearest hospital. Depending on the severity of the injury, use common sense to decide what needs to happen.
You’ll also want to remind workers regularly of what to do in the case of an accident. For example, have workers repeat the mantra “tuck, hold, and lean” during your Toolbox Talk so they’re more likely to remember what to do in the event of an equipment rollover. This recommendation to tuck in knees and elbows, hold on firmly, and lean away from the impact is from NIOSH.
Another suggestion is to put a sticker with key phone numbers, including each worker’s emergency contact, inside each worker’s hard hat.
Of course, this is the type of information that we hope your crew will never need. But in the event that the unthinkable happens, it pays to have thought about it in advance and to be thoroughly prepared.