45179_towardssaferschoolconstruction_0 2015 - Page 91

Key activity 3: Practise and communicate safety Safer schools are an opportunity to both practise a culture of safety and showcase hazard-resistant building practices long after the school building is completed. During construction, program managers should ensure appropriate health and safety procedures are in place to protect construction workers and the wider community. Fencing or other methods of securing the site should be used to protect community members, especially curious children, from dangerous construction conditions. Construction materials should be safely stored to protect people but also to ensure materials do not deteriorate or go missing. Community members can contribute to the construction by acting as security guards. A safe school building can communicate safety for years to come if labels and signage draw attention to its safety features. Ring beams and reinforcements around windows can be brightly painted and labeled as earthquake safety features. Braces used to connect roof trus ses to walls can likewise be labeled as protective features against high winds. Signs on raised foundations can show flood or storm surge heights and how they keep schools above damaging waters. SECTION III: CONSTRUCTION Workers should also understand and practise construction safety. Where needed, program managers should ensure they have training on health and safety risks and that construction managers, whether hired contractors or school management committee members, talk with construction workers each morning about safety. Because community members serve as unskilled labour on many communitybased project sites, they may not fully understand the risks associated with the day’s construction activities. Highlighting the risks and protective actions emphasises the importance of safety. The goal of a safer school is not relegated to the school building only. It is part of a culture of safety that goes beyond the safer school construction process. The safe school construction site becomes a community-wide learning opportunity when posters and signs highlight key hazardresistant construction techniques used. 82