Holes: A Latent Threat On Construction Sites

by | Nov 16, 2022

Multi-story construction projects are a big responsibility. If you’re a project manager or safety coordinator, you know that a lot can go wrong. One of the most dangerous hazards on construction sites is holes.

Holes present a variety of dangers to construction workers. There can be trip hazards, and workers could be seriously injured or even killed if they fall into a hole. Keep reading to learn about the industry’s regulations for holes and fall prevention tips!

Industry Saving Regulations For Holes

  1. If you’re digging a hole, guard it. Before making the hole, secure the area to keep people out.
  1. If the hole must be opened and the fall distance is more than 6 feet, workers must be confirmed by a fall arrest system, guardrails, or covers.
  1. A fall arrest system must meet the OSHA criteria from 1926 to be used.
  1. Guardrails, if used, must be a minimum of 42 inches high and have a mid-rail. They should also be able to support a 200-pound load–just like the railings, you find around the edge of buildings or stairwells. Toe boards are always recommended and required whenever someone works beneath the hole.
  1. Never block a hole with anything that can’t hold weight or is flimsy, such as paper, cardboard, or plastic.
  1. Regardless of the distance, industry norms demand that workers be protected from tripping and stepping into holes by covering them.

How To Prevent Falls In Multi-Story Construction Projects

Falls are the leading cause of death in construction. In multi-story construction, each story presents its own set of fall hazards. The most common type of fall is from an unprotected edge.

Most falls occur when workers:

  • Are not using safety systems such as guardrails, nets, or personal fall arrest systems
  • Are working on scaffolds that are not adequately erected, used, or maintained
  • Are climbing ladders that are not correctly positioned or secured

The best way to prevent falls is to have a comprehensive fall protection plan before work begins. The plan should address the specific hazards of the project and identify the safety systems that your workers will use.

All workers should be trained in the use of the safety systems and be familiar with the fall protection plan. You should conduct regular inspections of the work site and safety systems to ensure they’re used correctly and in good condition.

Work With Premium Concrete Hole Covers & Protect Your Workers

Fall prevention is a must in multi-story construction sites. Ensure you’re covering holes with the best concrete hole covers nationwide. At The Hole Solution, we specialize in making custom-sized covers for all sizes of holes. 

We want to help you protect your workers and prevent falls on your construction site. Contact us today to learn more about our products and services!