#242 Jobsite Emergency Action Plan

Construction is a “high-hazard” industry and leads all others in injuries and accidents. It is imperative to be prepared for all possible jobsite emergencies – medical, fire, natural disasters.

Medical: For minor injuries, first aid may be all that is needed. More serious injuries may need medical attention & further treatment. Sometimes first aid is needed to deal with life-threatening injuries that may even involve resuscitating someone whose breathing has stopped. Correct & rapid assessment of what should be done is crucial & often a matter of common sense applied under very difficult circumstances. The goals of first aid are to help the injured or sick person recover; prevent the injury or illness getting worse; provide reassurance; organize help; make the person as comfortable as possible. If you have to deal with a life-threatening emergency & you have other able bodied individuals around, send them to get help or have them call for help immediately.

Fire: There are 3 elements that contribute to a fire – heat, fuel, and oxygen. Heat can be generated from many sources on a construction jobsite.  It can be generated by sparks from welding operations, discarded cigarette butts, electrical shorts, frayed wiring, friction from power tools and hot exhaust pipes. Fuel can be found on the construction jobsite in many different forms – liquid, such as gasoline or solvents; a solid such as paper or wood scraps; or a gas, such as propane. Oxygen is the third element, which is necessary to sustain a fire.  This is one element we can’t do much about since air is most always present. Keeping the jobsite clean and removing fire hazards can help to eliminate the possibility of a fire.

Natural Disasters: Natural disasters occur frequently around the world, in every industry. Natural disasters can be particularly dangerous in the construction industry due to the hazards that exist. Earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, snow flurries, tornados, high wind, and even lightning can be fatal to construction workers. It is crucial for construction workers to be prepared, vigilant, and always listen to their supervisors in the event of a natural disaster. Emergency Action Plans should be reviewed intermittently throughout the duration of work to ensure safety is the top priority of all construction workers.