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Working in or around Mobile Plant

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The interaction between powered mobile plant and pedestrians needs to be managed and monitored to keep your construction site safe. Worksafe Queensland tells us there are around 200 serious injuries involving mobile plant in the construction industry every year.

How the interaction between vehicles and pedestrians is managed should be communicated to workers before the job starts.

Procedures should be reviewed, updated and communicated throughout the day because conditions can change as work progresses.

  • Identify when workers and visitors will be on site and the areas they will need to access. Where possible, have separate entry points for plant and pedestrians and clearly separate pedestrian walkways.
  • Identify movement of plant on the job. Ensure appropriate systems are in place so that the plant operator is aware of any people in the immediate vicinity of the plant. Using a spotter with radio communication is one way to do this.
  • Train and instruct workers and visitors. All relevant information, training and instruction should be provided before work begins. Tool box meetings are one way for supervisors and workers to discuss traffic management procedures, or raise any other work health and safety issues.
  • Consider operational exclusion zones. Minimise the need for workers to be inside exclusion zones while the plant is operating. Determine if the worker can do their job outside of the exclusion zone, at another time, or when plant is inactive.

Using a combination of controls to manage the risks for people working in or around powered mobile plant is best. All controls must be listed on your safe work method statement. Signage should clearly mark pedestrian walkways, guide traffic, provide warnings and identify exclusion zones but physical barriers that prevent pedestrian or plant access should also be in place.

Working around mobile plant on construction sites is hazardous. Manage the risks and keep your workers safe.

 

About the Author

Safety Concepts is an online resource providing up to date insights and covering issues in the field of Workplace Safety.

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