Working Over Water
During the course of constructing a bridge, you may be required to work over or near water.
Employees working over or near water shall be provided with certain equipment:
· A U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket or buoyant work vest. Inspect the jacket or vest for any defect that could affect its ability to keep you buoyant.
· Ring buoys with at least 90 feet of line should be provided and readily available for emergency rescue. Additional ring buoys should be in place if the work area extends past the 90-foot reach of the buoy.
· At least one lifesaving skiff should be immediately available.
You are your own advocate. We want you to be vigilant about safety. If these items are not on your job site, tell your foreman or your project manager. We will get the items you need to be safe.
If the water is only 1-2 feet deep, but an employee falls from 10 feet and is knocked unconscious, a drowning hazard exists. A Competent Person should survey the work area whenever you will be working over or near water to determine the hazards. Skiffs and ring buoys may not be practical in shallower depths where a drowning hazard exists. In this case, a rescuer could wade into the water to perform the rescue.
A lifesaving skiff may or may not need to be manned continuously depending on the hazards. Rescue personnel should be able to access the skiff readily when needed for rescue. If the skiff has a motor, regular engine inspection, and maintenance practices should be assigned to a Competent Person.
Employees working over or near water should be trained:
· In emergency procedures including signaling and alerting in the event of a water emergency, skiff launching, buoy tossing and other water rescue procedures.
· First Aid, CPR and other first responder training as their role requires.
*Please note that all Foreman and Project Managers are up to date on First Aid and CPR. If there is an emergency, know that we have trained people on site.
· Use, inspection and maintenance of life jackets, work vests and other lifesaving equipment.
· Fall protection systems and their usage over water: guardrails, warning signs, barricades.
· Electrical safety for tools used near water.