6 Potential Risks for Airport Ground Staff

29 November 2017 in Health and Safety Airport Safety Barriers
  • Airport Ground Staff

Airports in the 21st century are hectic environments, not only to be experienced as a holiday-lover, but as an employee too. The constant alert, awareness and training required makes for a high-pressure workplace almost at all times. There is a necessity for it though, as it ensures the safety of the passengers and every member of staff.

But it has to be asked – exactly how much risk do airport ground staff actually face on a day-to-day basis? Below is some of the most common risks that airport ground staff have to watch out for. If there is the potential that your workforce could do with some extra safety measures, you might find the answers to your questions right here.

To the Gallon!

On average, an international jet plane uses a gallon of fuel a second. Let that sink in – a second. If the maths is correct, a ten-hour flight can burn approximately 36,000 gallons of fuel. Who or what is responsible for transporting the fuel required for each flight? The fuelling tank, of course. During busier periods such as summer, or over the winter where people search for pastures warmer, it is disturbingly simple for the fuel truck to steer out of control due to scheduling pressures.

The level of potential damage can be limited with the installation of a flex impact airport safety barrier. The flexible design means they can be altered with ease and then taken to other on-site locations within the airport. The barrier’s vibrant colour and presence will act as an alert to the driver, meaning they are approaching an area of heightened awareness so to be cautious.

The sturdy material allows the barrier to possess extremely impact resistant abilities. This means that in the event of any accident, any energy accumulated from the accident is dispersed amongst itself, rather than back towards the source of the collision. This improves the safety level of those involved, both pedestrian and of a vehicular nature, too.

Did you Pack it Yourself?

One of the most common sights on airport grounds is the presence of baggage handlers, transporting luggage from the terminal to the plane prior to takeoff. Their duties involve ensuring the baggage is stored safely and efficiently, minimising any damage to the bags.

The strenuous nature of the job can take its toll on the workforce, with pulled muscles, joint issues and even the risk of arthritis a constant risk. Airport ground staff should be coherent with the correct lifting procedures in order to avoid such strains and injuries. Work based risk assessments are also useful, at frequent times throughout the year, in order to ensure all staff members are up to speed and working safely. Various noticed, posters and signage can be placed around the airport grounds for extra influences and reassurance.

Ground Level Risk

Those who operate on ground level must feel paranoid walking around when they are in the presence of planes and fuelling tanks, despite being used to seeing them on a day-to-day basis. With this level of heightened awareness, is there something available that could offer them a level of reassurance? The answer is yes!

The installation of some industrial airport safety barriers can make your airport ground staff feel safe and secure in such a hostile environment even at the best of times. These barriers aren’t restricted in where they can be placed, either. Nearby buildings surrounding the runway, holding spaces such as restrooms and staff break areas are also shielded from impending danger.

Safety barriers are only half the battle won, in the grand scheme of things. The staff are also required to follow the airport’s stringent health and safety protocols to the letter, which helps in itself to reduce the potential for hazardous scenarios. Simplistic measures such as bright, vibrant high-vis clothing can allow them to be seen by anybody that needs to see them. Combine this standard training and protocol with the functioning ability of safety barriers and you’ve got a high level of safety and more importantly – hazard prevention.

Fleet Protection

Every vehicle that operates within the airport grounds needs a great deal of legitimate care. This involves making sure they're running efficiently, ensuring the facade isn't wearing away and that there aren’t any mechanical issues before steering the vehicle.

Another important factor that must be considered is how they are kept and stored. A visible designated holding area for airport vehicles can help minimise the potential for collisions and accidents. If you combine this with the installation of a sturdy airport security barriers, you're essentially moulding an impenetrable shield between your most important fleet and any impending danger. Safety in airports should be paramount, regardless what side of the terminal it concerns. Everyone who travels through an airport deserves to feel safe, whether they are staff members or jet-setters.

Remember, with each accident that occurs within the airport, the repair bill continues to increase. Safety barriers can go a long way to cutting down unwanted expenses throughout the year. There is enough pressure on airport staff as it is, so giving them a helping hand and making them feel safe around potentially dangerous hazards will only benefit the staff, the vehicles and the airport going forward.

Everywhere You Go, Always Take the Weather!

If you do a job repeatedly, day-in-day-out, you tend to notice some wear and tear. For example, if you work in an office and you’re always sat at a computer, you may notice some issues with your wrists, such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. This mantra also applies to the ground staff. Working in such an array of conditions and constantly battling with the weather can be a physical strain.

Working in cold temperatures will inevitably lead to the occasional cold, flu and cough. This can be combatted by wearing the correct clothing, such as thermals and thick material clothing. The same can be said during the summer months. Exhaustion and dehydration are easy ailments to pick up if you’re wearing too many layers or not hydrating often enough. Wearing loose clothing, with your high-vis of course, will help you keep cool in hot temperatures.

A Strong Base Does Wonders

A flex impact airport safety barrier from Boplan provides an array of benefits. Their strong, sturdy base plates that are built below the barrier could turn into a very smart investment, financially. This is due to the fact that in the event of a collision, as mentioned above, the energy generated dissipates amongst the barrier’s own body.

Because of this, the energy doesn’t travel back towards the source of the accident and therefore, the base plates can remain in place, screwed to the ground. This is what tends to happen with traditional steel barriers – each accident causes the base plates to jolt out of the ground, causing extensive floor repairs. Not only this, but the barrier takes a bashing, as well as the vehicle involved in the accident. This is where the repair bills tend to increase with every aspect of the accident taken into consideration.

However, with a barrier as strong and vibrant as a flex impact barrier, you are guaranteed consistency. The barrier’s ability to keep its aesthetic appearance and colour, whilst more importantly keeping its shape even after a collision, means you can have peace of mind that every aspect of the airport outside of the terminals are kept safe. Also, with frequent repairs kept to a minimum, your barriers can operate all year round!

Stringent Testing for Sturdy Quality

All of our products here are externally tested at the Transpolis Laboratory, to crash test the products before they are given their certification. The research in question is led at the laboratory by Dr Edmondo di Pasquale of Princeton University and he and his team have years’ of experience in crash testing. This is to ensure that every customer that invests in these products are getting their money’s worth in terms of safety levels and risk solutions.

It goes without saying that you cannot put a price on safety and therefore corners can’t be cut in the manufacturing and development process. That way, everyone involved can have a clear conscience and be safe that every precaution has been taken.

Upgrade Your Protection

If airport safety barriers are something you’re interested in investing in, get in touch with Boplan today. Our vast catalogue of safety measures means that there are no restrictions as to what or who you can keep safe from potentially hazardous situations.

Give our team a call today on 01902 824 280. We are more than happy to talk, put your mind at ease and settle any curiosities you may have regarding our products.

Remember, airports are extremely busy environments and at the best of times, the atmosphere can be hostile and tense. Dangers can creep up from every corner and at any time. With that being said, make sure your airport is adequately prepared and protected for any potential collision, therefore putting every member of staff and passenger at ease.