The risk of injury exists at varying degrees in every workspace. Yet, the workers adapt and develop an acute awareness of the dangers they face at work. Without this awareness, many injuries and accidents are bound to occur.
Construction sites are considered to be among the most dangerous work environments in the world. Yet, many construction workers feel very safe at work. This is because they adhere to a strict set of rules and regulations for protection. This involves wearing protective gear, using clear communication protocols and others.
Some organizations take a step further and require their personnel to have comprehensive first aid training. The training is topped off by making sure first aid kits are available at strategic locations in the workplace. If someone gets injured, administration of timely first aid can save their life. Below are some of the essential components that should be in a first aid kit for construction workers.
1. Antiseptic and Disinfectants
The most common injuries in a construction site occur when either the workers or their materials fall. Lots of material are used in construction sites and some items, if not secured properly, can get loose and fall. While most construction workers are very careful, it is easy to miss a step and fall in a busy site. It is also possible for the support structures like scaffolding to fail and cause an accident.
There are several types of antiseptics and disinfectants. Some come in bottles while others are neatly packed in compact single-use sachets. They are useful for cleaning wounds and disinfecting the injured areas. The variety of materials and debris in a construction site can easily cause severe infection if a wound is unattended.
2. Sterile Dressing
It is not enough to clean the wound; you need to cover it with a sterile dressing. Your first aid kit should have various types and sizes of dressings to deal with different cut severities. These dressings are not a final solution. They should only be used to keep the cuts clean until you can see a doctor.
Injured construction workers should see a doctor as soon as possible. Even if the first-aid procedure stops the bleeding, the injury may have deeper effects that a trained first aider may miss. What seems like a minor injury may cover up severe tissue damage, internal bleeding or hairline fractures. These could lead to dangerous health complications if not addressed quickly.
3. A Variety of Bandages
The next types of construction site injuries by order of severity are torn tissues or ligaments, broken bones, fractures and dislocated joints. These are mainly caused by heavy impact or mechanical strain. The best thing you can do in this situation is to immobilize the injured body parts with bandages,arm slings or braces. Any movement can cause more damage than you can imagine.
Your first aid kit should also have some pain relief gel that you can apply on the injury before bandaging it. An urgent X-Ray should be arranged for a doctor to see the full extent of the injury and take the appropriate action. Where possible, a first aid kit for construction workers should have a neck brace in case of a spinal or neck injury.
Many other essential components should be included in construction site first aid kits. These include eye baths, eye pads, saline solutions, distilled water, surgical tape and gloves among others. A well-stocked first-aid kit makes it easier for a first aider to give the appropriate emergency treatment onsite.