Safety Zones

  • All workers have the responsibility to establish and maintain safety zones around themselves, heavy equipment and hazardous activities.
  • Install barricades and/or warning systems around the perimeter of the safety zones to alert people about the dangers and to prevent them from entering the area.
  • Ground personnel must stay out of Operators’ blind spots and must never turn their backs to heavy equipment that is in motion.
  • Before approaching equipment, workers are required to make direct visual (or verbal) contact with the Operator and wait for positive response. Equipment must be fully stopped & grounded and visualize the Operator’s hands are off the controls before approaching,
  • Supervisors will discuss and reinforce all established safety zones with their crew members during every pre-shift safety meeting.

Workers are responsible to establish and enforce one or more “virtual” safety zones around their immediate work area – essentially encapsulating themselves in a virtual 360º buffer zone where they permit nothing to enter. This zone casts both horizontally and vertically to account for hazards that could come from any direction; front & back, left & right, up & down.

The primary purpose of a heavy equipment Safety Zone is to restrict ground personnel from entering the designated area to ensure that no one is run over or struck by any moving component. Therefore, it is beneficial to set the outer perimeter of the zone at least 50-feet back from the equipment, or as far away as practical based on the geographical limitations of the jobsite.

The zone must encompass 360º around the equipment to account for the swing radius of the superstructure, any counterweights and reverse travel direction.