#60 Working Safely

There are many workers who believe an accident will never happen to them and that safety is an issue only for the “safety-man” or the “safety-administrator”. These “Tailgate Talks”, the safety training sessions, and other safety tools only have meaning when they are preventing accidents, and they can only help to prevent accidents when safety is high on our agenda and each of us makes it part of our work and lifestyle.

As a construction worker, if you believe that safety is just for the other person, you are making a big mistake. Sooner or later you will learn, possibly in a painful way that such an attitude can be dangerous and costly. Safety responsibility means being aware of and taking the safety precautions necessary to perform your job in a safe fashion. These responsibilities include wearing personal protective equipment such as your hard hat and suitable footwear, inspecting and maintaining your tools, following rules and procedures, and not taking chances and shortcuts.

Your attitude toward safety will have an effect not only on yourself, but on those around you and on your family. New employees need to absorb safety information and work safely as a top priority; they are more likely to have an accident during their first year of service than at any other time. If you practice safety when you work with them, they will likely adopt your safe habits. Your safe practices will become theirs.

Accidents cost lives, time, and money; safe workers live longer, are more efficient, and are more productive. Your value to your employer will increase when you make safety an integral part of your life. Nothing but good can come from a sound attitude toward safety. It should be apparent to you that safety responsibility is a very important part of the job. Take responsibility for your safety at work and home, there’s nothing worse than being involved in a crippling injury that we all know could and should have been prevented.