You may remember passing by and wondering how they managed to stay safe – let alone do their jobs, too – as cars maneuvered around them.
Now you're "in the zone" yourself, you realize just how dangerous conditions in a road work zone can be. In fact, about 100 workers are killed and about 20,000 workers are injured every year in "highway and street construction accidents," according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. More than half of these incidents occur within work zones.
In addition to the hazards presented by vehicles whirling by, people who work in construction zones must contend with variable temperatures and fluctuating weather conditions. When working at night, they must deal with low light and reduced visibility, too.
Preparation is always the best way to keep yourself safe on the job. Allow the Las Vegas workers' compensation lawyers at Greenman, Goldberg, Raby and Martinez, along with the institute, share some tips for keeping you safe in road work zones:
Las Vegas workers' compensation lawyers urge you to stay alert
- Wear high visibility clothing, hats and vests at all times. "High visibility" means fluorescent or reflective.
- Identify blind spots before your shift, especially with regard to moving equipment.
- Acclimate yourself to lanes where walking is allowed and prohibited, where work vehicles enter and exit and the direction of moving traffic.
- Ensure the parking brakes on equipment are in good working order and chocks are placed under the tires of vehicles parked on inclines.
- Ensure equipment operators and workers on foot understand each other's hand signals.
- Gauge the swing area for equipment that involves buckets.
- Flaggers should take the time to understand the traffic flow in the work zone and set up traffic channeling devices accordingly.
- Flaggers should maintain a reasonable distance from each other so oncoming motorists can clearly see them and distinguish their varying roles and ensure they have functional two-way radios to communicate with their work team.
- Carefully approach machinery by signaling the operator to turn off the equipment first.
- Fasten your seat belt before you operate any vehicle.
- Equipment operators should never move equipment without making positive eye contact and the proper hand signal from work crews in their vicinity.
- Look around before you move off your position.
- Never stand directly under suspended equipment, such as buckets and brooms.
- Work in tandem with spotters when you load and unload equipment.
- Never assume motorists have spotted you and/or will slow down or stop. If you perceive your safety to be in danger, take evasive action.
Contact GGRM the Las Vegs workers' compensation lawyers
The Las Vegas workers' compensation lawyers at Greenman, Goldberg, Raby and Martinez know as well as anybody; accidents happen, even when people are careful and take precautions to protect their safety. If you've been injured on the job and are worried about your next move, contact Greenman, Goldberg, Raby and Martinez at 702-388-4476 and they will guide you through their rules of the road with a free consultation.