To reduce the risk of accidents in the workplace, the following general safety rules and procedures are preventative measures to be observed by all Workers. They are minimal guidelines for working safely. It is your duty to be aware and apply safe work habits while on the job and understand the client’s rules.
All Workers are expected to follow these rules, which are company policy.
GigHound Code of Safe Practices and General Safety Rules
This code is general in nature and covers many types of business activities:
- All Workers will follow job-site safety rules and report all unsafe conditions or practices to their job-site supervisor and a GigHound Representative.
- GigHound Representatives will insist that GigHound Workers observe and obey all rules, regulations and directives required to achieve safe work conditions. If policies are not followed it will result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.
- Anyone known or suspected to be under the influence of alcohol, drugs or any controlled substances will be subject to the provisions set out in GigHound’s Substance Abuse Policy.
- No Worker will knowingly be permitted or required to work while their ability or alertness is impaired by illness or other causes that might unnecessarily expose that individual or others to injury.
- Horseplay, practical jokes, scuffling and other acts that tend to endanger the safety or well being of co-workers is prohibited.
- Work will be supervised to prevent injuries when working with equipment and when handling heavy materials. When lifting heavy objects, Workers should use proper lifting techniques. (Safe lifting techniques are explained fully in this guide)
- Workers will not handle or tamper with any electrical equipment, air or water lines, or machinery in a manner not within the scope of their assigned duties, unless they have received authorization and instructions from their worksite supervisor and GigHound.
Industrial Safety Rules
- Always wear a hard hat in designated “hard hat” areas; safety glasses or goggles, safety gloves, back support belt and other protective equipment, etc., where advised or mandatory. The client may provide some of these items. If not, contact your GigHound Representative for instructions.
- Other safe work personal attire:
- Shoes – Always wear the CSA-approved safety shoes that are required for the specific assignment. No open-toed shoes are permitted at any time. Canvas or nylon sport-type shoes (e.g. running shoes) cannot be worn on any industrial assignments unless approved by the client. Contact your GigHound Representative for further instructions.
- Clothes – Do not wear ill-fitting or baggy clothes around moving machinery. Loose ribbons and dangling jewelry (gold chains, earrings, bracelets, etc.) are a safety hazard and must not be worn while working.
- Hair – Long hair must be kept behind the neck and shoulders to prevent possible entanglement with machinery.
- Remove all body rings (finger, ear, etc.) before working around moving machinery or electrical equipment and while handling heavy objects.
- Do not operate any equipment, which, in your opinion, is not in a safe condition. Inform your job-site supervisor immediately.
- Do not operate any machinery or equipment without authorization
- Practice good housekeeping by keeping your work area as clean and uncluttered as you can. It will help reduce the likelihood of an accident.
- Focus on your work, but be alert to what is going on around you. Understand your responsibility for your own safety.
- Obey all worksite safety rules, governmental regulations, signs, markings and instructions. Be particularly familiar with those that apply directly to you. If you don’t know—ask!
- When lifting, use approved lifting techniques (Safe Lifting Techniques are fully explained in this section)
- Avoid unnecessary talking, shouting or other loud noises that may distract or startle other Workers from their work.
- Always use the right tools and equipment for the job. Use them safely and only when authorized.
- Be constantly alert for moving equipment and loads. Always stand clear of operating machinery and equipment.
- When working with lumber, remove or bend down all protruding nails.
- Do not run in the client’s building or across the client’s outside property.
- Pick up objects on the floor that may be a safety hazard. Report any spills to your job-site supervisor immediately.
- Be familiar with emergency exits and evacuation procedures at the job-site.
Safety Rules for the Use of Power Tools
From time to time, the use of various power tools may be required as part of your work responsibilities. Before working with power tools on assignment, ensure it was part of your original job description described by your GigHound Representative. If so, the following power tool safety guidelines are to be followed:
- Understand the power tool. Learn the tool’s applications and limitations as well as the potential hazards involved.
- Never abuse power cords. Don’t carry tools by or yank the cords to disconnect them from the receptacles. Keep cords away from heat, oils and sharp edges.
- Wear proper apparel. Loose clothing or jewelry can get caught in moving parts. Gloves (rubber) and proper footwear are recommended when working outdoors.
- Use safety glasses with all tools. Also, dust masks or respirators when applicable.
- All tools should be grounded unless they are double insulated. If the tool is equipped with a three-prong plug, it should be plugged into a three-hold electrical receptacle. If an adapter is used to accommodate a two-pronged receptacle, the adapter wire must be attached to a known ground. Never remove the third prong of a plug.
- Secure work. Use clamps or a vise to help hold and support work. It’s safer than using your hands. Both hands should be free to operate tools.
- Do not remove or alter guards. Guards can only protect you from injury if they are in place and in working order.
- Keep work area clean. Cluttered areas and workbenches invite accidents.
- Protect your hands. Keep hands away from sharp edges and all moving parts.
- Hold by insulated surface. If the tool comes in contact with live electrical wiring inside a wall, floor, ceiling, etc. it could become live itself. Always check work area for live wires and hold the tool by the insulated surfaces when in use.
- Avoid dangerous environments. Don’t expose any power tool to rain or use in damp, wet, gaseous or explosive locations. Work areas should be well lit at all times.
- Use the right tools. Don’t force a small tool or attachment to do the job designed for a larger tool.
- Keep visitors away. All visitors or unauthorized personnel should be kept at a safe distance from work areas.
- Remove adjusting keys and wrenches. Make a habit of checking to see that keys and adjusting wrenches are removed from tool before turning it on.
- Never use a damaged power tool. If you notice damage or excessive wear, report it to your job site supervisor.
- Avoid accidental starting. Be sure the switch is off before plugging the tool into the power source. Don’t carry plugged in tools with your finger on the switch.
- Accessories. The use of accessories other than those recommended for that tool may be hazardous.
- Don’t force tools. Power tools are designed to function within specific speed ranges.
- Store idle tools. When tools are not being used, store in dry, secure areas.
- Don’t overreach. Maintain proper footing and balance at all times.
- Disconnect tools. Before servicing or changing accessories, be sure to disconnect the tool from the energy source.
- Wear ear protection. Protect hearing from excessive noise.
- Grinding wheels. Use a grinding wheel only at the manufacturer's recommended speed for material being ground. Discontinue grinding if heavy vibration occurs. In some cases, vibration may cause the grinding wheel to fly apart. Always wear eye protection.
If you are asked to use any power tools other than those covered by the above rules, notify your GigHound Representative.
How to Lift
It’s something you do every day – often without even thinking about it – on or off the job. Not thinking about it may be a big mistake, however.
There is a widely recognized right way to lift. Without the proper technique, a seemingly simple lift may result in injury – pulled muscles, hernias or painful back problems.
To aid you in lifting correctly and safely, always follow these seven basic steps:
- Spread Your Feet. Place one foot alongside the object to be lifted and the other behind it. Spreading your feet gives you greater stability. Now, your rear foot is in position for the upward push needed for the lift.
- Keep Your Back Straight. Bend at the hips and knees, squat into a sit-down position, keeping your back as straight as possible. “Straight” means your spine; back muscles and body are in proper alignment for lifting safely.
- Shoulders Back. Hold your shoulders back and your stomach in to keep your spine in line and firm. This will help to relieve pressure on the lower back.
- Be Sure You Can Lift It (size up the load). Extend your fingers and hands around the object to be lifted. Use your full palm—Your fingers have very little power on their own, so use the strength of your entire hand for the lift. Tip the load on its side to test its weight and determine if you can carry it comfortably. Get help if the load is too big, too heavy or too bulky for you to handle alone. NEVER ATTEMPT ANY LIFT UNLESS YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY SURE YOU CAN SAFELY HANDLE IT!
- Tuck In Your Arms and Elbows. Draw load in close and tuck in your arms and elbows close to the side of your body. Your arms lose much of their strength by holding them away from your body.
- Center Your Body Weight. Position your body so that your weight is centered between your feet. This will ensure better balance and a stable lift. Begin your lift with a push off your rear foot.
- Turn Your Forward Foot Out. Point your forward foot in the direction you plan to go. Turn your whole body to avoid twisting during your lift. It is one of the most common causes of back stress. Now, make the lift by using your strong leg muscles to stand up.
Putting the Load Down
- Keep back straight.
- Avoid twisting your body.
- Squat down, bending at the knees.
- Set load down and carefully release it.
Additional Lifting Tips and Review
- Use hand protection (gloves) if necessary.
- Wear safety shoes to protect your feet.
- Check load for rough strapping, sharp edges, splinters and exposed nails.
- Move your feet to turn your whole body. Do not twist your upper body at the waist.
- Ask for assistance if load weight is beyond your capabilities.
Ladder Use – Climbing/Descending
- Use both hands to climb/descend, and maintain three-point contact (two hands and one foot OR two feet and one hand in contact with the ladder).
- Face the ladder.
- Do not overreach. Move a stepladder when needed.
- Do not “shift” or “walk” a stepladder when standing on it.
- Do not stand, climb, or sit on the stepladder top or pail shelf.
- Do not overload. Step ladders are meant for one person.
- Do not use a stepladder as a brace or as a support for a work platform or plank.
- Do not use stepladders on slippery surfaces.
- Do not use stepladders on soft ground where one leg may sink further into the ground than others.
- Do not place stepladders on boxes, unstable bases or on scaffolds to gain additional height.
- Do not climb the back of a stepladder.
- Do not push or pull stepladders sideways.
- Do not use ladders in passageways, doorways, driveways or other locations where a person or vehicle can hit it. Set up suitable barriers or lock doors shut.
Range of movement/Standing
- Keep hands above knee level when reaching downwards to grasp objects.
- Keep belt buckle (i.e., navel) within centre of ladder when reaching sideways.
- Avoid leaning backward while moving objects.
- Avoid rising up on toes when reaching above to place an object.
- Avoid forceful or jerky pushing/pulling movements where there is the potential for an unexpected reaction.