Protecting the Backbone of Construction: Minimising Risks from Material Handling

Author Allan Tregear Calendar 8 January 2024

Construction workers face physically demanding challenges on a daily basis which can significantly impact their lives. Many regulations and initiatives aim to warn workers of the associated risks, including the rising concern of long-term health issues from improper manual handling. We’ll explore such regulations and dive deeper into the best practices when lifting and handling material and the best equipment to minimise adverse health.

Routine lifting of heavy objects, daily exposure to whole-body vibrations, and repeatedly performing forceful tasks can take a toll on a worker’s body. Research has shown workers can develop symptoms of Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD) over time – an injury or condition that can affect the back, joints and limbs. MSD can present itself in many forms, but the main symptoms include pain, stiffness, and limitation of movement. They can even lead to long-standing disability, which affects the quality of life and independence. Estimates indicate that 42,000 people in construction are affected by MSD conditions, which accounts for 53% of all ill health in the sector. 

The prevention of MSD conditions entails understanding how to lift heavy materials, using the right equipment to minimise strain on the body and taking the necessary steps to minimise overall risks.

Minimising risks

The current law requires that employers control the risks to the health of their workers, including the prevention of MSD-inducing lifting tasks. The on-site management’s role is to ensure workers refrain from lifting overly heavy objects in relation to their body weight and that they are educated on how to use the appropriate machinery. 

In addition, to comply with handling regulations, employers must carry out risk assessments in their working environment and provide the appropriate equipment to ensure workers can avoid hazardous operations. Reducing risks will minimise the number of workers taking sick leave and lower the sector’s 53% ill health statistic.

Maintenance

Employees must ensure that machinery is maintained well to be used whenever necessary. Such regular maintenance is guaranteed with equipment hire as they regularly undergo quality checks. At The Hireman, we have dedicated workshop teams trained in product repair, extending the life cycle of our equipment and ensuring that they are continuously operating at optimum efficiency.

Using the right equipment

The Hireman can provide all the equipment necessary to keep workers safe and not lift exceedingly heavy objects on-site. For transportation, The Hireman provide pallet trucks, both manual and powered and transformer trolleys that can travel heavy objects on flat ground throughout the site. If you need something smaller, the furniture skate is ideal. 

Carrying any object upstairs can be dangerous, even more so if the item is heavy, so the Stairclimber Sack Truck is the ultimate aid when moving boxes, crates, drums and other heavy items upstairs. 

Handling flat materials can be difficult and uncomfortable. Hence, tools like the Grabo and the Dry Wall Panel/HVAC Duct Lifter are perfect assistants for carrying and holding flat objects in place to prevent workers from holding flat materials for long periods. 

If you're interested in setting up an account, all you need to do is pop an email over to [email protected] and we'll do the rest!

The best lighting and heating to hire for winter

Author Allan Tregear Calendar 2 November 2023

Winter is soon approaching, meaning the dark and cold temperatures will quickly affect sites and work spaces. As we move through the seasons, hiring essentials such as heating and lighting is vital in creating a safe and productive atmosphere for workers from morning to evening. 

Let’s discuss some of the lighting and heating equipment best suited for different work environments:

Lighting 

As natural light becomes scarce in the mornings and evenings, maintaining adequate on-site lighting ensures workers can operate efficiently and reduce the risk of accidents. At The Hireman, we supply a range of site lighting solutions that are effective and energy-efficient:

Due to its clever compact design, the Cordless Worklight is a fantastic solution if you are away from a power source or need a lightweight and portable light source. This small but mighty work light can brightly light up a space of up to 220m² with a 240° tilt for a more focused task.

The Wobble Light is a great first pick for those with outlets or power sources. This highly robust and versatile lighting system is designed with a self-righting ‘wobble’ base, making the lights difficult to knock over. You can also remove the lit tube from the base and use it as an inspection light. 

Where floor lighting may be a potential hazard on site, an alternative is high-level site lighting. Our LED Festoon Lighting is invaluable for providing consistent and widespread light, ensuring that every corner of a site is well-lit. With 25m of Arctic cable and a 110V power source requirement, the kits are easily movable or extendable as your project progresses. 

Floodlights are a popular choice due to their ability to illuminate large areas whilst being lightweight, versatile and efficient. Our Twin Low-Energy Floodlights are ideal for indoor and outdoor sites as their telescopic tripod makes it easy to orient and adjust precisely to your project needs.

 

Heaters

Keeping sites comfortable for continued productivity is essential as we get into cold and dry winter months. We offer an array of heaters available for heating and drying, curated for various-sized rooms and locations:

With variable temperature control due to its built-in thermostat, our Industrial Fan Heaters are ideal for situations where operators are not stationary and warm air needs to be circulated throughout the space. Designed to not produce odours or humidity, the heater is ideal for indoor use.

A compact yet powerful option is the fan-assisted Propane Space Heater. With a height of 68cm and a reasonable weight of 13kg, this space heater is easy to move around and perfect for well-ventilated commercial and industrial premises to ensure all spaces are heated appropriately.

As the winter comes in, plastered walls and damp-affected areas will take longer to dry. The Infrared Heater is both robust and durable making it a brilliant choice for any site. Designed to provide directional infrared heat, users will have coverage of up to 6m. 

Compact heaters such as the convector heater and Portable Oil Radiator are the best choices for smaller spaces such as site offices and small to medium-sized rooms. Their slimline and compact design circulate warm air throughout rooms for instant relief.  

 

Hire lights and heaters today with The Hireman! 

If you are interested in hiring any lights or heaters, get in touch, and The Hireman will handle the rest. 

If you're interested in setting up an account, all you need to do is pop an email over to [email protected] and we'll do the rest!

Introducing the Desk Glider: A simple access solution for maintenance tasks

Author Allan Tregear Calendar 3 October 2023
Simple Access Solution Desk Glider banner

In the ever-evolving world of construction and maintenance, using the right access equipment can make all the difference in terms of safety, efficiency, and productivity. Enter the Desk Glider, a breakthrough access solution for working over and above desks. Whether you need it for its preliminary over-the-desk use or as a free-standing tower, maintenance tasks have never been simpler. Let’s explore if the Desk Glider is the right access solution for you:

Technical Specifications

  • Boasts an impressive 2.0m platform and 1.3m working outreach
  • Lightweight aluminium construction
  • Compact – fits through single doorways
  • Features safety railings, two integrated rear stabilisers and non-slip surfaces that are compliant with Work at Height Regulations
  • No batteries or power source required

 

Suitable Environments

The Desk Glider’s versatility extends to the environments in which it can be used. It is well-suited for:

1. Offices and Facilities Management
As the name suggests, one of its top uses is in office spaces where the podium can easily be used for maintenance over desks. Facility managers and maintenance personnel can also use the Desk Glider to perform routine inspections, repairs, and maintenance tasks in commercial and industrial settings. Its compact design enables easy access to hard-to-reach areas.

2. Construction Sites
Construction professionals can benefit from the Desk Glider’s mobility and ease of use. It allows workers to access different levels of a building during construction or renovation projects, improving efficiency and reducing downtime.

3. Warehouses and Distribution Centers
In large warehouses and distribution centers, the Desk Glider can be used to access high shelves, conduct inventory checks, and perform repairs on equipment, all while ensuring safety and efficiency.

4. Retail and Display Setup
Retailers often require access solutions for setting up displays, changing signage, and performing maintenance in stores. The Desk Glider’s compact design makes it ideal for such tasks, even in confined spaces.

 

The Perfect Access Solution for Maintenance Tasks

With all its benefits and uses, the Desk Glider has found the perfect balance of streamlining work processes by providing quick and easy access to elevated areas.

If you’re ready to experience the Desk Glider’s advantages firsthand, look no further than The Hireman. We are proud to offer the Desk Glider platform with a 2.0m platform height, available for hire on our website here. Take your access solutions to the next level with Desk Glider and elevate your productivity and safety standards today.

If you're interested in setting up an account, all you need to do is pop an email over to [email protected] and we'll do the rest!