Facts About Glazier Health and Safety

Glazier health and safety is slightly different to health and safety in other areas of the construction sector due to the different types of work undertaken by glaziers.

Glazier Health and Safety

Working at Height

One of the main issues for anyone considering glazier health and safety is the fact that a lot of the work will be undertaken at height using ladders and scaffolding.

Any ladders that are used must be inspected on a regular basis. They should only be used on clean, level ground and they should be secured. The upper resting point should not be something fragile such as plastic guttering.

Scaffolding should only be erected by people who have been trained and are competent to do so, and it should be inspected on a regular basis. It should only be used on firm, level ground.

Ladders and scaffolding should never be used in windy conditions.

Manual Handling

Window units and large sheets of glass can be heavy and difficult to handle. This can result in back and arm injuries and the problem is exacerbated by the fact that glazing often involves working in awkward positions.

Glazier health and safety can be improved by ensuring that workers have been shown the correct way to handle window units and sheets of glass, and have had training in safe lifting techniques.

There is also a risk of cuts from the sharp edges or glass or broken glass. Protective gloves and footwear should be worn to minimise this risk.

Cutting, Grinding, Drilling and Polishing Glass

These processes can create large amounts of dust. A mask should be worn to prevent respiratory problems, and eye protection should be worn to minimise the risk of eye injuries.

Such work can also involve the use of powered hand tools. These can cause Vibration White Finger if used for prolonged periods of time, so gloves should be worn and regular work breaks should be taken.

Powered hand tools may also be noisy. A risk assessment should be undertaken to determine the level of noise that is generated, and hearing protection should be worn if needed.

Adhesives, Sealants and Cleaning Products

These often contain solvents which can cause health issues. The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 make it a legal requirement that COSHH assessments are completed in respect of these. Protective gloves may be needed to prevent skin problems and breathing apparatus may be required depending on the products being used. Adequate ventilation may also be necessary if the products are being used in enclosed places.

Glazier health and safety when working outdoors in hot or cold weather

Glazier health and safety should take into consideration the fact that a lot of the work will often take place outdoors.

In the summer, if it is hot and sunny there is a risk of skin cancer, so sun cream should be used.

In the winter, the cold weather can result in cold stress such as:

  • Hypothermia
  • Frostbite
  • Chilblains

Cold stress can be avoided by wearing appropriate clothing. The ears, face, hands and feet in particular should be protected from the weather.

image source: flickr

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