5 Safety Tips for Operating Heavy Machinery

operating heavy machinery grand rapids miHeavy machinery is essential to the construction and building industry. That’s why it’s vital that your team be properly trained in how to use the equipment at your job sites. Otherwise, you run the risk of someone getting hurt and/or your company getting sued.

Here are our safety tips for operating heavy machinery.

1. Train Your Employees

Every person on your job site should undergo safety training for each piece of equipment. We recommend training in the classroom while also providing opportunities for hands-on experience. That way, your crew will feel confident when using heavy machinery at the next job.

Here some examples of topics you should cover during the training:

  • How to safely mount and dismount equipment
  • How to start up each piece of equipment properly
  • How to lift loads
  • What are the load capacities for each piece of equipment

Only trained workers should operate heavy equipment.

2. Stay Aware of Your Surroundings

There’s a lot happening at a construction site. This is why it’s so important to stay aware of your surroundings while operating heavy machinery.

Be mindful of where other people are working. There shouldn’t be anyone working where you’re operating heavy machinery. Also, operators need to be conscious of their swing radius.

The last thing you want is to accidentally hit a worker, bystander, or piece of construction equipment. That’s why you can’t let your attention waver for even a minute.

3. Block Off Areas With Heavy Machinery

Workers shouldn’t be in areas where heavy machinery is in operation. For this reason, you’ll need to set up barricades where heavy machinery is going to run.

While operators are responsible for staying aware of their surroundings, it’s also your duty to warn other workers of potential danger. This includes setting up a safe perimeter around areas with heavy machinery.

4. Wear Your Seatbelt

Always wear your seatbelt when operating heavy machinery. It could save your life!

Your seatbelt is designed to keep you safe in the event of the machine tipping or rolling over. It holds you in place so you don’t hit your head or get thrown from the cab.

While it may seem like common sense to jump out of the cab if the equipment is tipping, this could prove to be fatal. If the heavy machinery tips in the other direction it could land on top of you, causing serious injury or death.

If your equipment has a Rollover Protection Structure (ROPS), this will also help keep you safe. But this doesn’t mean you can get away with not wearing a seatbelt. You should always wear your seatbelt so you’re protected in the event of an accident.

5. Only Use Equipment as the Manufacturer Intended

Always read the owner’s manual before operating a new piece of heavy equipment. That way, you’ll know important information such as the load capacity and the equipment’s intended use.

Only use a piece of equipment the way the manufacturer intended. Otherwise, you could risk serious injury or death from misusing equipment.

If you need to perform a certain task at your job site, give us a call. We’d be more than happy to help you buy or rent the right heavy equipment for the job you have in mind.

Learn more: How to rent heavy equipment in just a few hours >>

Request a Quote with Fredrickson Supply

Fredrickson Supply is an equipment distributor in Grand Rapids, MI, for contractors and municipalities. To request a quote for our new or used equipment, call (888) 949-2385. We hope to hear from you soon!