Construction workers often need to use concrete cutters. Here are some precautions that should be taken when operating this powerful piece of equipment.
Wear safety gear
Wearing certain types of safety gear can help to reduce a person's chances of sustaining an injury when they use a concrete cutter.
Protective eyewear is essential; wearing safety goggles will prevent any shards of concrete or dust that are released into the air as the equipment's blade rotates through a section of concrete from entering and damaging the operator's eyes.
Safety goggles can also help to prevent the operator from making a dangerous error, by ensuring that their vision never becomes obstructed when they are handling this piece of equipment. If a person who was not wearing goggles used a concrete cutter and some dust got into their eyes, they could move the concrete cutter in the wrong direction and accidentally cut themselves or one of their nearby co-workers.
Ear protection is also important. As the blade of a concrete cutter rotates at high speeds, it generates an extremely loud noise. This noise could permanently damage an operator's hearing and cause tinnitus if they do not shield their ears with ear muffs.
Finally, those tasked with operating this equipment should wear a respirator, to minimise the amount of airborne toxic dust that enters their lungs whilst they carry out their work.
Put barriers around the work area
The noise and dust generated by operating a concrete cutter can affect not only the operator of the equipment but also the other people around them.
Anyone standing within a few feet of the equipment who is not wearing the above-mentioned safety gear could be at risk of sustaining eye, ear or lung damage.
As such, it is important for the person tasked with using a concrete cutter to set up a barrier (using construction warning tape or a portable fence), so that their co-workers do not get too close to the equipment whilst it is in use.
Only use the equipment in a safe environment
Construction workers should only use concrete cutters in a safe environment. If for example, a person were to operate this equipment outdoors during a period of heavy rain, their hands could become slippery as a result of the rainwater.
This could lead to them losing their grip on the handle of the concrete cutter and sustaining a wound if the equipment then falls onto their feet.
Similarly, if they were to operate the concrete cutter on an extremely windy day, a powerful gust of wind could potentially result in the equipment being blown out of their hands whilst it is still switched on. If it were to hit someone nearby, that person could be severely wounded by the moving blade.