The International Information Center for Geotechnical Engineers

Thursday, 14 December 2017 16:49

Understanding Safety Precautions During A Building Renovation

Are you embarking on revamping your entire commercial property and building? If so, there are likely a hundred different tasks on your list of things to do. The first step is hiring a responsible contractor who will get the job done thoroughly and quickly. But the biggest issue at the forefront of every construction job is safety. Sometimes it’s the minor details that if not followed properly can lead to major disasters.

Here are just a few factors to consider and ask your contractor about prior to launching the renovation.\

Equipment Inspection

One of the biggest hurdles that a construction team will have to encounter is acquiring the proper equipment. Old, outdated equipment and tools is unsatisfactory for most foreman who run a large or small construction crew. Be sure to talk with your contractor ahead of time to make sure that they are using the proper equipment needed for the job. Look for things like:

  • Toggle pins fitting properly on the scaffolding
  • Excessive wear and tear with power tools.
  • Taping or rigging machinery and tools.
  • Worn belts or chains on elevators.
  • Workers not using safety harnesses properly around heavy equipment and on open up level stories.

 If you don’t feel comfortable with what they’re using, bring it up. For example, if there are missing pieces in the scaffolding or other equipment pieces, contact a toggle pin manufacturer for properly fitting parts. Faulty equipment or misuse of old, outdated equipment can be a contributing cause to injury on the job. If specialty equipment, power tools and excavation equipment is required to complete your building project, be sure they are renting the right machines or have access to them. If not, an accident or injury could ultimately fall on you as the responsible party.

 Preventing Code Violations

Once your building renovation is complete, it must be approved during the city building inspection in order for you to be open for business to the public. If you are still working in the building or it’s open while the renovation is taking place, you’ll have to have the right permits in place by the city. For example, if you run a restaurant and there is no running water or gas to cook the food, the building or health inspector in your city and state may not permit you to welcome the public into your building. Talk with your contractor about the legal issues regarding renovation and operating your business. If you have any questions, talk to your lawyer about what the safest procedure is for when you’ll be able to re-open your business.

 Plumbing And Electrical Check

 Part of standard procedure for any building renovation is to have the plumbing and electrical working in proper order before the job is complete. You may also have to have everything working while construction is happening unless you have a generator or water storage tank in place. Contacting a qualified electrician, plumber and HVAC specialist to come out and do a final check is the best way to prevent any surprises from happening when the final inspection takes place by the city inspector.

 Safety Procedures For Workers And Visitors

 If you have employees working and visitors coming in while your building is under construction, be sure to follow the proper safety code. This starts with making sure that everyone is safe at all times, including:

  •  Wearing safety hats if in a restricted construction zone.
  • Having the proper eye protection on while debris is in the air.
  • Using safety procedures to protect your skin by wearing gloves.
  • Avoiding exposure to hazardous chemicals by wearing a breathing apparatus.
  • Staying out of restricted areas.

 Using safety net fencing, signs, cones and barriers to help identify places with uneven ground or holes in and around the construction site is also beneficial for everyone.

Undergoing construction on your business can be a stressful situation. Gain control by keeping the lines of communication open at all times and asking the right questions as they come up. This will prevent an accident from occurring on your property and will enable the entire building renovation to go off without a hitch.  

Read 321 times Last modified on Thursday, 14 December 2017 20:38

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