Thursday, May 2, 2013

Safety tip Scheduling of trades

Safety tip Scheduling of trades

In today’s construction world times have changed and so have safety regulations. In the modern age of construction, safety comes before all else when building custom homes. One of the main things that general contractors do is organize and schedule the sub-trades. But scheduling the trades incorrectly can create a major safety problem.

You have probably watched those shows were they are building a house for charity and there is 100 people working on the home, there are people everywhere, they are on the roof, they are on the ground and they are in the building. That to a general contractor is a health and safety nightmare.

When general contractors schedule trades in custom homes they schedule them so that they aren’t working over top of each other but beside each other. For example:

You would not schedule roofers to shingle the roof of a new home while there are men below installing windows. Falling tools, falling shingles or any debris can fall off the roof and hurt someone or damage the windows as they are being installed.

The proper way to schedule these two trades is to have the roofers start first and when they have finished one side of the building then the window installers can start installing windows behind them.

This might sound like common sense but you wouldn’t believe some of the worksites I have visited and there are men everywhere doing different things and they were tripping over each other’s tools and material.

Where you really can get into trouble is when you have heavier equipment moving around outside the house like landscapers with their skid steers or excavators. This is a recipe for disaster, not just for the safety of men but also the safety of material. It doesn’t take much to ruin a lift of siding if it’s backed into by an excavator or people walk on top of it to get to something on the other side.

A good general contractor will schedule there trades in an orderly fashion and will not sacrifice workers safety for the building schedule.

Even in large commercial or residential high rises where it looks like there is an enormous amount of labour onsite, it’s actually quite controlled if you were to enter the site and take a walk around. The labour is divided up into different sections and usually one area of work is designed to not overlap or impede the other.

This is all for safety reasons.

Rob Abbott
Operations Manager
Village Builders Inc.

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