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Safety Spotlight: Housekeeping

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

By: Alec Schaufenbuel

Housekeeping isn’t just something you do at home, it is a crucial part of jobsite safety. Construction sites are busy with different trades performing work, suppliers providing materials, and management reviewing the progress. With so much happening, practicing good housekeeping can reduce accidents, maintain order on the jobsite, can create better workflow and efficiency, and shows that the team cares about the project and has pride in the work they are doing.

Housekeeping is a way to keep a project clean and tidy. A well-kept jobsite:

  • Keeps walkways open (especially important in the event of an emergency);
  • Reduces slip and trip hazards;
  • Lowers the amount of flammable material on-site.

Maintaining an organized jobsite is an ongoing process that should be done throughout the work day as part of routine tasks.  

  • Gather and remove debris, scrap, and garbage at the end of your shift or as you finish a task;
  • Pound protruding nails out of boards; 
  • Keep walkways clear;
  • Do not run cords or hoses across walkways;
  • Clean any spills immediately; 
  • Store material at least 10 feet back from the edge of an opening or roof;
  • Put away any tools or equipment when not in use;
  • Follow all proper OSHA fuel and chemical storage procedures.

Everyone on the jobsite has a part to play in housekeeping. Each person should clean up after themselves and take a few moments each day to notice anything out of place – such as cords or debris. These simple steps will make each project site safer!