Spotlight on Safety - Looking Out for Co-Workers in the Field

co-worker construction safety

Your co-workers aren't just your co-workers. They may be your friends too. It is important to keep them safe. You can keep your co-workers safe by asking yourself three questions: Am I completing safety checks? Am I watching for safety hazards? Am I watching co-workers to ensure their fitness for duty?

Are you completing safety checks?

When assisting a co-worker by setting up equipment, do a safety check before you hand it over. Setting up a ladder? Make sure it is sturdy and the proper height. Do you use shared tools? If a tool isn't working properly, tag it and report it.


Are you watching for safety hazards?

Watching for safety hazards that effect not only you, but those around you, will make your safety awareness keener. Your co-workers or employees can see and recognize a safety issue just as well as you can, but everyone experiences cognitive failure. Who hasn't searched high and low for glasses that were on their head? Watching out for workers can keep everyone safer.

Are your co-workers or employees fit to work?

As a field supervisor or field worker, you observe others every day. However, do you observe them for fitness for duty? Do they look tired? Unfocused? Do they smell like alcohol? Are they acting impaired? Do they physically look ready to work the job they are doing? Do they look injured? It might be uncomfortable to bring up something sensitive in nature or suggest that a worker might not be fit to work that day, but, by doing so, you could save a life.

Safety Speaker John Drebinger once said, "I have interviewed people who saw [a safety concern], didn't say something, the person got hurt, and then they are haunted for the rest of their lives." You'll never regret saying something. Speaking up could be the difference between life and death.

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