Contractor Safety Share

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Demolition Work Produces Hidden Hazards

A carpenter was removing a bulkhead from around a column during a demolition project.  Inside the bulkhead was a light fixture, which the carpenter was attempting to remove.  While trying to remove the light fixture out of the bulkhead, the carpenter’s Kevlar sleeve rolled up his arm and the exposed forearm made contact with the end of a cut metal stud.  The contact with the metal stud resulted in two lacerations on the right forearm, both approximately one inch long, which penetrated through two skin layers.  The carpenter received 15 sutures to close the wound and prescription antibiotics.

Factors to consider at your site and/or project include, but not limited to the following:


1.      Prior to performing work, always review the work area for both visible hazards and hazards that may become present during the course of work.

2.      During demolition work, each employee must be aware of all hazards and take into consideration steps to reduce the hazards.  If the hazards cannot be removed or isolated, appropriate PPE and body positioning needs to be evaluated and implemented.

3.      The use of Kevlar sleeves with thumb holes should be considered when performing work around potential laceration hazards.  Thumb holes help hold the protective sleeves in place and prevent “roll-up” when performing work.

4.      Throughout a project, whenever hazards are identified they should be removed.  If unable to remove a hazard it should be marked with high visible tape or paint to increase awareness to others working on the job.

5.      Always try to utilize a tool instead of placing body parts in hazardous areas.


Consider this example as you complete today’s work activities.

Safety Flash Action Items:
  • Date Contractor Safety Flash posted for all employees to review: _______________
  • Safety Talk meeting date: _______________
  • Full employee attendance and participation at safety meeting to review this incident (documentation required).
  • Employees understand urgency in protecting themselves and others.
  • Supervisors and Employees are clear which items shared in this Safety Flash are mandatory.
  • Employees/Supervisors will focus on recommended actions during future work activities of a similar nature.
Contract Firm Management Rep Signature____________________

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