If you work in masonry, you know you have to be exacting every day. But, as you build structures with your hands, it’s equally important to put some resources into improving occupational health and safety.
One of your biggest occupational health and safety priorities should be to protect your eyes. After all, you only get one pair.
- Always wear safety glasses, goggles or a face shield
- Opt for shatterproof lenses
- Glasses must fit snugly and comfortably
- Make sure you have a full field of vision
- Wear eye protection over your regular glasses
- Avoid using contact lenses
Hearing protection is another concern every contractor must address. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards suggest workers should be exposed to no more than approximately 90 decibels of noise for eight hours a day. If noise exceeds this level, workers should wear ear plugs or ear muffs.
Ear plugs are good protection from sustained noise below 95 decibels; ear muffs should be worn when you are exposed to louder consistent sounds.
How to Dress to Improve Occupational Health and Safety
At work, your skin is often exposed to things like cement, dust, sand, wind and extreme temperatures. As a result, you need to take precautions to prevent injury, discomfort or even permanent disability.
To remain safe in masonry, you can’t just wear any old thing to work. You must consider potential dangers before hitting the job site.
- Shirts should be light-weight, light-colored and loose
- Socks should be medium-weight and white
- Belts or suspenders will prevent your pant legs from sagging and catching on objects
It’s important to regularly clean your work clothes when they are exposed to chemicals that may damage your skin.
If you work in a situation where chemicals may be splashing around, add these safety accessories to your attire:
- Face shields
- Shoe coverings
As a mason, you need footwear that provides both comfort and protection.
Good work shoes have these three features:
- Hard soles to protect against puncture wounds
- Reinforced toes to protect your feet from fallen objects
- High-tops to provide ankle support
The number one hard hat recommendation is that you should always wear one that is OSHA approved.
Other things to keep in mind when selecting a hard hat:
- Bright colors are best
- A hard hat should fit snugly
- No part of the outer shell should be touching your head
- Remember to inspect the outer shell for cracks or abrasions
- Don’t forget to periodically clean your hard hat
If you work in masonry, occupational health and safety should always be a priority. It has many big benefits, including reducing workers’ sick time and decreasing overall insurance costs.