Details for Safety Essentials

Protect Your Skin

Warning: Contact with wet, unhardened concrete mortar cement or cement mixtures can cause SKIN IRRITATION, SEVERE CHEMICAL BURNS (THIRD-DEGREE) or SERIOUS EYE DAMAGE.

Cement burns are extremely painful and disfiguring. Unfortunately, the pain is not felt for hours and may not be severe for days. By the time medical attention is sought, a third degree burn often has occurred.

Frequent exposure may be associated with irritant and/or allergic contact dermatitis. Wear water-proof gloves, a long sleeved shirt, full length pants and proper eye protection when working with these materials. If you have to stand in wet concrete, use water-proof boots that are high enough to keep concrete from flowing into them. Wash wet concrete, mortar, cement, or cement mixtures from your skin immediately. Flush eyes with clean water immediately after contact and seek immediate medical attention. In-direct contact through clothing can be as serious as direct contact, so promptly rinse out wet concrete, mortar, cement, or cement mixtures from clothing. Seek immediate medical attention if you have persistent or severe discomfort.

Protect Your Head

Always wear an approved hard hat when on a construction jobsite. Be sure to take proper care of your hard hat. Do not punch holes into it and don’t store or carry it on the rear window shelf of a vehicle as the sunlight and extreme heat may weaken it. Do not wear the hat backwards or when it is damaged. Don’t wear a steel hard hat, which can conduct electricity.

Protect You Eyes

Wear shatterproof safety eye protection at all times to keep cement, flying particles, dust and toxic fumes out of your eyes. Don’t wear contact lenses on the job. Chemicals, gases or dust may get under them and irritate or damage the eyes.

Protect Your Ears

There is no cure for noise-induced hearing loss. To avoid damage, wear self-fitting ear plugs made of waxed cotton, foam or glass fiber wool which are available in most drug stores. Preformed or molded earplugs that are fitted to your ears specifically can also be purchased from a professional. Do not use disposable ear plugs more than once.

Protect Your Feet

To protect your feet from falling objects, crushing hazards or punctures from sharp objects like rebar or tie wire, wear steel-toed safety boots. If you have to stand in wet concrete, wear waterproof rubber boots.

Protect Your Back

Back problems from overexertion are a common construction site injury. Do not lift too much! Keep your back straight, knees bent and the load close to your body when lifting to minimize strain. Lift with your legs not your back. Never twist your body when carrying a load; pivot your feet, not your spine. When a load is too heavy, ask for help. Concrete weighs between 120 and 150 pounds per cubic foot which is a lot of weight in a small volume. Use wheeled carts whenever possible and don’t overload it. Make sure the path is clear of tripping, slipping or falling hazards.

Skin Safety