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Safety starts before work boots hit the ground. A successful strategy begins with pre-planning, communication, supporting employees and even selecting the right project to bid. Construction is complex, involving many trades and contractors. The work is driven by owner requirements, local regulations and industry-specific practices. Coordination and communication among all parties are critical to successful health and safety outcomes.

Pre-Planning for Project Safety

There are multiple factors that should be evaluated for the impact on safety when selecting the right project. Details matter, and this requires intentional, methodical planning.

  • Does your company have the necessary combination of talent, technology, training, equipment, logistics and expertise?
  • Will the location of the jobsite affect safety if there’s an excessive commute for the workforce?
  • How will people, materials and equipment flow into and through the jobsite?
  • How will your team work safely at heights?

For example, if an 8-foot ladder is normally used but the higher ceiling requires a 10-foot platform ladder, that is a significant difference. Or consider how might the job change if someone missed the note that this contract had a no-ladder policy, as renting mobile elevated work platforms would be an added cost. This would also require operator training, logistics updates and protective equipment needed to use the lifts.

Pre-Planning for Emergency Response

While pre-planning for project safety ensures the right people make the right thing happen at the right time and for the right reason, sometimes something unexpected happens. Pre-planning requires determining if there is enough resilience to quickly detect and minimize the effects of an emergency. Emergency response planning, training and equipment adds resilience and ensures resources are ready.

Planning for Success

Some would say safety is common sense, others know it’s about relationships and intentional planning, equipping and supporting. When safety isn’t integrated with full communication from the beginning, the workforce could be put at higher risk if time, logistics and budgets are stretched too thin. Incorporate pre-planning for safety in every aspect of the job to ensure your team returns home safely at the end of every shift.

Looking for help enhancing your safety program?

Discover resources available through ABC’s STEP Safety Management System and other health and safety topics at

For more information or assistance, please reach out to Joe Xavier or Aaron Braun.