You may have to do a variety of potentially hazardous duties during your role as a utility worker. While finishing the job is important, keeping yourself protected from the potential risks you may face should be your top priority. Continue reading to get a rundown of essential safety tips for utility workers.
Watch for Falling Hazards
You’ll likely have to scale heights during the course of your job. Whether it’s climbing up utility poles, working up on scaffolding, or inspecting water and gas systems, you need to stay vigilant to avoid falling. Although your company should have OSHA-certified fall prevention procedures in place, you can also take a few necessary precautions on your own.
Always check for potential tripping or slipping hazards on surfaces and remove them before you start to work. Use ladders with slip-resistant feet. You should also make sure you’re using personal fall arrest systems such as ropes, harnesses, and boots because if you tumble or lose consciousness, they can save your life.
Use Gas Monitors in Confined Spaces
You may have to respond to a call about a sewer backup for the city or your workplace. While you’re climbing below, you may quickly find yourself succumbing to the toxic effects of gas exposure in a confined space. Some of the most common gas detection mistakes you can make are being unaware of the environment you’re walking into and not always fitting a gas monitor on your person.
Gas monitors check whether the atmosphere contains a concentration of hazardous fumes and vapors above a certain threshold. When they detect a toxic atmosphere, they sound an alert, indicating that you should leave the area.
Don’t Get Complacent
While you’ll naturally get better at doing your job the longer you work, you can’t let yourself get too comfortable. Otherwise, you risk complacency or distraction, and it only takes a few seconds of carelessness for a mistake to happen. These mistakes can lead to serious injuries or even death.
Check on the Weather
Considering utility workers spend the majority of their time outside, the weather can significantly impact the safety of your jobsite. During overcast and foggy days, make sure you’re wearing reflective clothing and have lights set up so cars can safely spot you on the road. Depending on the season, you’ll also need to make sure you dress appropriately to keep yourself warm or cool.
Utilizing this guide on essential safety tips for utility workers will hopefully help you practice the proper precautions when out in the field. You can keep yourself happy and productive during your career by avoiding severe accidents.