Category Archives: Safety

Construction Sites Need Hurricane Prep, Too

The Atlantic Hurricane Season starts on June 1, and most storm forecasters are calling for a busy year with many storms and a higher-than-average number of strong storms. Being prepared is key to weathering a tropical storm or hurricane, and it’s not just homeowners who need to be ready if a big storm hits. Preparing your construction site for a hurricane is important to minimize damage and liability if a strong storm makes landfall. See the recommendations for securing your construction site ahead of a hurricane or tropical storm.

Preparing Your Construction Site for a Hurricane
Being prepared for a big storm minimizes damage to a construction site and reduces a construction company’s liability. Both save time and money, allowing construction to resume faster after a storm has passed. It’s advised that a construction company write a Hurricane Preparation Plan before any storm is near that outlines what must be done to prepare and who is responsible for doing it. This may also include working with local building departments.

Your Hurricane Preparation Plan should include:

  1. Securing the job site. Materials, machines, and tools must be secured or removed so that they do not become airborne in the high winds of a tropical storm or hurricane. Include any signs, construction fencing, trash, dumpsters, and portable bathrooms in the plan.
  2. Secure paperwork like plans and other documents, and electronics, in a safe location.
  3. Protect in-progress utility systems from sand and water, both from rain and storm surge.
  4. Cut power to the site and enact plans for utilizing power generators and fuel after the storm.
  5. Enact plans for water removal, such as placing pumps in basements or excavations so they are ready to go as soon as it’s safe.
  6. Remove or secure hazardous chemicals as construction companies are on the hook for cleanup if any hazardous chemicals make it into the environment.
  7. Ensure the security of buildings or structures. Take steps to make sure your construction projects and adjacent buildings are boarded up and secure.

Remember to assess the damage to your construction site after the storm has passed with extreme caution.

Tucker Paving has been in the asphalt and concrete paving industry for over 25 years in the Sunshine State, and serving Central Florida for over 50 years, so we’ve seen our share of major hurricanes! Contact us online, or call us at?(863) 299-2262, for assistance with your next asphalt or concrete paving project! 

Keep ADA Rules in Mind During Construction and Alterations

The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law in 1990, and its requirements took effect in 1992. In short, the ADA requires that buildings such as public accommodations, commercial facilities, and local and state government facilities be built so that all individuals—regardless of their ability—are able to use a building with minimal impediment. Make sure you are constructing or remodeling your buildings and spaces to comply with ADA requirements or expect heavy consequences.

Complying With ADA Requirements
The purpose of the ADA is to give everyone equal access. Ensuring that your building or space provides equal access to those with handicaps is the right thing to do. It can also be costly to do otherwise. Fines can be between $55,000 to $75,000 for the first offense, and double that for additional offenses. Additionally, not complying with the ADA can leave you open to lawsuits.

There are many ADA requirements for commercial buildings, but some of the most common include:

  • Hardware on doors that everyone can access.
  • Public and company bathrooms that can be accessed by anyone.
  • Parking that is accessible to those with disabilities and have it labeled and enforced as such.
  • Wide door frames to allow wheelchairs to fit through.
  • Drinking fountains that are accessible to all.
  • Flooring that does not restrict or impede mobility.
  • Grab bars and railings in locations where they could be needed.
  • Handicap ramps and/or installing curb cuts; a building is required to have 60 percent of entrances and exits be accessible to those with disabilities.
  • Furniture and other furnishings, or any feature, that do not create barriers to receiving service.

Find the complete list of requirements in the ADA Checklist.

Tucker Paving has over 25 years of experience in the asphalt and concrete paving industry. We are very familiar with ADA requirements for residential, commercial, and municipal construction regarding sidewalks, curbs, and more. Contact us today by calling?(863) 299-2262, or fill out our contact form online, to let our experts handle your next paving project! 

Know How to Keep Workers Safe in the Florida Heat

Florida’s summers can be brutally hot and humid, and it’s especially dangerous for those working outdoors in the heat. Construction workers are prime candidates for suffering from a hot Florida day, with those in roofing and road work being at a higher risk. There are many factors at play that lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke, both of which are dangerous health conditions. As Florida’s temperatures and humidity rise, it’s important to know how to keep workers safe.

Factors That Lead to Heat-Related Illnesses
There are many factors that put workers at risk of developing heat-related illnesses while on the job. Construction companies and those in supervisory roles need to look for:

  • No Time for Heat Acclimation. Those working in a hot environment, such as outdoors in Florida, need time to get acclimated to hot and humid conditions. When the weather slowly warms up over a period of days, the body can adjust and acclimate to higher temperatures. However, if hot temperatures come on quickly, or if a new or returning worker is just starting to work in hot conditions, then heat-related illnesses are much more likely.
  • High Humidity. The body cools itself by sweating, and the sweat is evaporated off the skin; this cools the body down. However, Florida’s common high humidity in the rainy season means that sweat is less likely to evaporate. Then, the body can’t cool itself and heat-related illnesses are much more likely.
  • Too Much Clothing. Many construction sectors require workers to wear pants, cover their arms, and more. Clothing can hold in heat and restrict sweat evaporation.
  • Dehydration. Workers must drink water or sports drinks to replace liquids lost from sweating. Soda, coffee, and alcohol can increase dehydration.
  • Health Conditions. Many health conditions and medications increase susceptibility to heat-related illnesses. Different workers will have varying tolerances to heat.
  • Supervisors should watch for the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke—thirst, irritability, rash, cramping, lack of sweating, confusion, disorientation, slurred speech, or unconsciousness. Heatstroke is a medical emergency that should involve calling 911 and moving the affected worker somewhere cool and shaded. Supervisors and employees should be trained to recognize the signs of both heat exhaustion and heatstroke.

 

Don’t Skimp on the Safety Walkaround

At Tucker Paving, we take the safety of our workers and clients very seriously. One way we demonstrate this commitment is by conducting safety walkarounds. What is a safety walkaround? Glad you asked! A safety walkaround is basically a tour of the jobsite with the intention of finding and correcting any safety concerns.

The Safety Walkaround, Broken Down
There are three stages to a safety walkaround, and each stage plays an important part in the overall safety of the entire team. At Tucker Paving, we don’t believe in cutting corners, so when we do a safety check, we make sure it’s done right.

  1. Pre-inspection. Before starting any walkaround, it’s important to identify any areas of concern, plus schedule a time that will be convenient for any managers, officials, or safety committee members that should be involved. Make sure that any necessary equipment will be ready, and that you have the appropriate attire for the worksite.
  2. Inspection time. While doing the walkaround, keep a sharp eye out for things that be potential safety issues, such as tripping hazards, blocked exits, poorly maintained equipment, frayed or exposed electrical components, needless clutter, etc.
  3. Post-inspection. A report and abatement plan should be drafted soon after the inspection which includes a timeline for corrective actions to be taken. This should be shared with all involved parties and updated as improvements are implemented.

Better Safe Than Sorry
At Tucker Paving, we work hard to ensure our work is done on time, within budget, and safely. The well-being of our workers and clients is of paramount importance to us. When you need paving work done, trust Tucker Paving to get the job done right. Give us a call at (863) 294-1007 for an estimate, or email us at info@tuckerpaving.com for more information.

Do You Know OSHA’s COVID-19 Regulations?

A hundred years ago, American employees in construction often worked under dangerous conditions, and employers were under no legal obligation to take the safety of workers into consideration when assigning tasks. Fortunately, times have changed! In 1971, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was established by the United States Department of Labor, and now we have rules and regulations that govern what is too risky for a worker to be exposed to. Tucker Paving takes the safety of all of our workers and partners very seriously and stays up-to-date on all safety standards.

OSHA Regulations for Construction
In the COVID era, health and safety are getting priority treatment. Like any other construction company, Tucker Paving is expected to protect the health of our employees and the public by minimizing potential exposure to the perilous virus. Here are some of the guidelines set forth by OSHA to protect us all:

  • Encourage workers to stay home if they are ill.
  • Allow the use of masks on the job site. 
  • As much as possible, advise employees to maintain appropriate social distance by allowing everyone at least six feet of personal space.
  • Promote hygienic activities like handwashing by providing either soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Use EPA-approved cleaning chemicals to sanitize shared equipment and spaces (such as portable toilet facilities) frequently.
  • Minimize in-person meetings and use good social distancing and sanitation protocols.
  • Encourage all workers to promptly report any health or safety concerns to the appropriate supervisor.

We Follow the Rules
At Tucker Paving, we know that no one wants to pick up a potentially deadly disease at work to take home to their families. We take the threat of coronavirus very seriously and work hard to make sure that all of our employees, and anyone else that we come in contact with, is as safe as possible. By working together, we can overcome this unprecedented challenge!

Protect Your Hands From Work Injuries

See the best ways to protect your hands while on the job, as hand injuries are very prevalent in the construction industry.

Hand injuries are a common occurrence in the construction industry. According to data from the CDC, hand injuries are responsible for more than 1 million visits to an emergency room each year by workers in the United States. Hand injuries can be costly both in time lost from work and medical costs. Additionally, hand injuries can also be debilitating, leaving those injured with only limited use—or even zero use—of their injured hand. Protecting your hands from work injuries is of the utmost importance.

Tips on Protecting Your Hands from Work Injuries

There are a number of different ways to keep from injuring your hands on a construction worksite, depending upon what line of construction work you are in.

  1. Wear Proper Gloves. Machinists, mechanics, carpenters, iron workers, welders, electricians, and more can all benefit from wearing gloves. Gloves protect your hands from being pinched, from picking up splinters from wood, from being cut by sharp metal, from being burned or chemically damaged, and more. With the variety and sophistication of gloves made specifically as PPE, there’s no reason not to wear them.
  2. Respect Power Tool and Machine Guards. Guards on power tools and machines are there for a reason, and removing or dismantling them can result in serious injury. Protect your hands and the rest of you by respecting the guards on power tools and machines. Don’t try to remove them or bypass them in any way, and always make sure the guards are present and functional before using a tool or machine.
  3. Pay Attention. While you may have performed a certain job or used a certain tool a hundred times without incident, that doesn’t mean you are safe from danger. Becoming complacent and not paying attention when running a saw, using a torch, or performing any number of jobs on a construction site is how you miss details that lead to injury.
  4. Pay Attention to Training and Seasoned Workers. Training is meant to protect you from injury, just like the advice of those workers with more job experience! Listen and follow the advice.

At Tucker Paving, safety is always our leading priority! We offer over 25 years of experience in the asphalt and concrete paving industry. We utilize our expertise for residential, commercial, and municipal clients. Contact us today by calling 863-299-2262, or fill out our contact form online, to let us know about your next concrete or asphalt paving project! 

Practicing COVID Safety in Construction

The COVID pandemic has reached into all aspects of our lives, and the construction industry is no exception. Safety should be the first priority on any construction worksite, and that includes taking measures to protect workers from COVID. See guidelines from OSHA on practicing COVID safety in construction, below.

COVID Safety Measures for Construction
While the job description and hazards for those working in carpentry, ironworking, plumbing, electrical, heating/ ventilation/air conditioning/ventilation, masonry and concrete work, utility construction work, and earthmoving work are different than non-construction industries, many of the safety measures companies should take to protect employees from COVID are very similar.

  • Create a Job Hazard Analysis as it pertains to Covid. OSHA advises to “Assess the hazards to which your workers may be exposed; evaluate the risk of exposure; and select, implement, and ensure workers use controls to prevent exposure.” It is most important to identify times and locations where workers will be in close proximity or will be touching the same tools, machinery, or controls repeatedly.
  • Train employees on the symptoms of COVID, how it is spread, the importance of social distancing and hygiene practices, and any other policies and procedures on reducing transmission of the virus that are applicable to each employee’s duties.
  • Implement standard operating procedures and employee training pertaining to social distancing, use of face masks, and for when a worker has contracted COVID.
  • Maintain as much space between workers as possible, such as through utilizing staggered work schedules, identifying “choke points” where workers are required to be closer than 6 feet, and creating procedures for limiting the number of people in those areas at a time. 
  • Keep in-person meetings, like toolbox talks and safety meetings, as short as possible, limiting the number of workers in attendance, and use social distancing practices.
  • Keep toilet and handwashing facilities clean and disinfected, including portable job site toilets. Make sure hand sanitizer dispensers are always filled. 
  • Disinfect items regularly that are frequently touched, such as doorknobs, light switches, tools, machinery and vehicle controls, and sink handles and toilet seats.
  • Have employees use higher-level PPE, like respiratory protection, if they are in settings where social distancing protocols cannot be followed. 

Safety is always our leading priority on any Tucker Paving job site. We have been in the asphalt and concrete paving industry for over 25 years! Contact us online, or call us at 863- 299-2262 for your next asphalt or concrete paving job! 

Understanding the Different Types of Hydroplaning

Hydroplaning is a jarring experience that includes the loss of control of a vehicle while in motion due to wet roads. It can oftentimes result in an accident when a driver loses control of the vehicle, and the vehicle crashes into another vehicle or a stationary roadway feature, like a guardrail or road sign. Many people think that hydroplaning only occurs at high speeds when there is a lot of water pooled on the roadway, but there are actually three different types of hydroplaning. Explore the different kinds of hydroplaning below to avoid losing control of your vehicle and stay safe on the road.

Different Types of Hydroplaning
Hydroplaning does always include a wet roadway, but the amount of water needed to cause the phenomenon to occur is not as much as you think.

Dynamic Hydroplaning. This is the hydroplaning that most people are familiar with. It happens when a vehicle’s tire is completely separated from the roadway by a layer of water while in motion. Usually, a tire’s tread moves water out and away from under the tire as the tire passes over, and some water moves through the cracks and crevices of the pavement, and the tires maintain full contact with the pavement. In dynamic hydroplaning, enough water stays under the tires so they lose contact with the pavement, which results in the loss of control of the vehicle. Dynamic hydroplaning most often occurs when a vehicle is traveling at 45 mph or faster.

Viscous Hydroplaning. This sort of hydroplaning is caused when a pavement is too smooth, either through polishing by traffic or when flushing occurs, which is when the asphalt—the viscous liquid that bonds the aggregates to form asphalt pavement—has bled up through the aggregates to cover large swaths of the pavements surface. Both scenarios mean the roadway’s pavement has too little micro-texture. It only takes a very small amount of water to cause viscous hydroplaning, because the water can’t escape into the texture of the roadway. Hydroplaning can occur at any speed with viscous hydroplaning.

Tire-Tread Rubber Reversion Hydroplaning. This hydroplaning is one experienced by 18-wheelers when the wheels lock up at high speeds on wet roadways that have good macro-texture but not enough micro-texture.

Other issues that contribute to hydroplaning include higher speeds, marginal tires, and low skid resistance. The best option is to reduce speeds when traveling on wet pavements!

Tucker Paving has over 25 years in the asphalt and concrete paving industry. Contact us online or call us at (863) 299-2262 to see how we can assist you with your next asphalt or concrete paving project.