Anytime you have contractors working on one of your jobsites, you could be at risk if one of them gets hurt. Even if you don’t wind up with a Cal/OSHA citation, your business is affected—your workers’ comp costs, your lost time, your bottom line. Managing contractor safety concerns can be complicated and time-consuming, but taking even just a few simple steps can help reduce your risks.
- Train workers well: Train anyone working at your site—whether they’re contractors or your own employees—on the specifics of the jobsite and the type of work they’ll be doing. Their knowledge level should be more than just introductory. It should be at a level where they can recognize an unsafe condition and help to prevent injury to themselves or others by reporting it. Most importantly, as part of that training, they should know when (and how) to say “no” to whomever is in charge if they are being asked to do something unsafe.
- Inspect jobsites: Whenever you have multiple employees on a site, and particularly if you have a mix of employees and contractors, inspect the site yourself to determine whether or not you’ve created a safe work environment. If you note special conditions that your contractors may not be familiar with, such as a need for specialized PPE they don’t normally wear, or permit-required confined spaces they should stay out of, make sure you bring everyone up to speed.
- Keep communication lines open: Both your employees and contractors need to know who to contact about everyday safety or health concerns, and who their emergency contacts are. Encourage your employees to report any unsafe behaviors on the part of your contractors, and vice versa—and be sure to promptly address these complaints, regardless of whether those responsible are “your” workers or “theirs
Source: Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor
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