The Importance of Site Lighting
A well lit work site is an important factor for maintaining health and safety. The sooner a hazard is seen, the sooner it can be avoided.
Determining the type of site lighting required depends on type of work being carried out and what hazards are present. It is especially important to provide illumination if work is being carried during hours of darkness.
Businesses who fail to provide adequate site lighting for their employees may be breaking the law. Employees who sustain injuries as a result of inadequately lit working environments will impact productivity due to time off needed to recover. They may also bring a lawsuit against the company.
Site Lighting Considerations
The Area that Needs to Be Lit – Is the area outside or inside? What it the quality of the ground that the site lighting is going to be positioned on. Also the dimensions and shape of the area including height, these are important aspects to consider.
The Type of Work Being Carried Out – If detailed technical work needs to be performed, brighter illumination is required. If the lighting is just for people to be able to walk safely through an area it can be dimmer and require less power.
Available Power Sources – Will mains power be available? Are you going to be in an area where battery or generator lighting it required? Whatever country you are in, for safety, site lighting is always run at 110 volts by using a transformer.
Is Light Pollution Going to be an Issue? – If site lighting is used in urban environments, there is likelihood that residents near the site may be disturbed. Care should be taken to make sure that illumination is focused only on the area where work is being carried out. Some local authorities may impose a cut off time or curfew when work must cease and site lighting must switched off.
The Correct Lighting for the Work Being Carried Out – Diffused light sources work better in areas where glare must be avoided. Also when performing certain tasks, being able to clearly distinguish different colours may be important. Therefore the site lighting used should produce a colour temperature that is a close to daylight as possible.
Site Lighting Fixtures and Their Specific Uses
Temporary String Lights – This type of Utilitech lighting is excellent when primary lighting needs to be set up quickly. Up to ten bulbs can be installed into the string. The String plugs into a normal wall outlet and each socket has a protective cage around it to prevent the bulb getting damaged. As well as being useful in working environments, they are handy for temporary lighting at barbecues and for use in marquees.
The cable used in the construction of string lighting it very thick and durable. The lighting can easy be strung across ceiling beams and rafters. As well as over temporary hooks and scaffolding.
They typical power rating of a ten bulb string light is 1500 watts. This means that 10 bulbs of up to 150watts could be used. That’s bright, but could be made brighter still by using 50 watt CFL bulbs which produce the same amount of light as 300 watt incandescent models.
Halogen Portable Work Lights – These single light units are very easy to transport and are useful for secondary light applications. The halogen bulb is extremely bright and powerful with a colour temperature that closely matches daylight and is not fatiguing to work under.
Halogen portable site lighting is useful when used to secondary light an area that need to have care and attention to detail applied to it. Plastering is often done with the help of these lights as they show up imperfections. Painters also find them useful as colours and paint textures are easily distinguishable .
Power Tower Portable Lighting – If you want to light a large area but need something that is durable and portable, these lights are for you. The lighting unit can extend to a height of 12 feet, allowing it to light an area up to 21000 square feet.
The bulbs are rated at 2000 watts and should last for at least 10000 hours. A fantastic feature of units like this is that they can easily be packed down to a size that will fit into the trunk of even a small car.
The included wheeled base makes the unit easy to move around sites, the base is stable and weatherproof models are available to provide lighting in even the harshest conditions.
Whatever site lighting you decide to use, it is always advisable to check whether it is conforms to relevant health and safety laws. Manufacturers like Utilitech may be able to help you, or you could contact you local municipality.
My review of Utilitech’s Portable Work Light
The Occupational Safety and Health Adminstration