Concrete is used on most construction sites. There are hazards resulting from the act of forming, placing and finishing concrete.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- PPE must include heavy-duty waterproof gloves and slip-resistant boots.
- Gloves and boots need to be high or long enough to protect legs and arms.
- While kneeling, knees must be protected.
- Safety glasses should be used to prevent concrete from splashing into the eyes.
- Exercise caution while stepping on forms and tied rebar that may not support your weight.
- If using a concrete bucket, watch for pinch points.
- Maintain good communication with the concrete pump operator.
- It is very common for the rebar caps to come off while placing the concrete. If a cap fall of put it back. Consider using saddles with 2 by 4’s instead of caps.
- Concrete hides tripping hazards. Watch for trip hazards.
- When placing vertical concrete, use proper fall protection.
- Before using a bull float, check for overhead electrical hazards. Some handles are over 20 feet long.
- Power trowels should have positive or dead man’s switches only.
- If chemical are used while finishing concrete, make sure you understand the hazards by reading the SDS.
- If dried concrete is handled and dust is created, there might be a silica hazard. This can happen during cutting without water, cleaning out lines using air hose, or by dry sweeping. A respirator may be needed.
- When pulling vertical forms, keep workers out of fall area. Use warning signs.
Remember: Concrete placement and finishing is hard work. Be sure that you have hydrated yourself before you begin and during breaks.
- Pre-read the Toolbox Talk. Your comfort level and confidence will be higher if you know your topic.
- Discuss related tasks, work areas or events that make the Toolbox Talk relevant to your job site.
- Involve the workers by asking questions and input that drives discussion.
Questions for Discussion
- Have you ever had a burn from concrete?
- What other hazards are present during concrete operations?