Construction work on your gap year can be fun

Working construction is a job that many young men perform, especially when they are travelling and looking to work their way around the world. It is something that requires physical health but, in many instances, not a huge amount of formal training. So, it is that many your Antipodeans, South Africans and others end up in places like England, where the exchange rate is very good, performing hard manual labour to pay for their drinks and the experiences that they have on gap years. But while construction can be fun, and a means to an end, it can also be fraught with danger and difficulties. So, if you see construction work in your future, here are a few things to remember.

Be alert to danger

Working on construction sites can expose you to all sorts of dangers. It is very intentional that seasoned construction workers wear hard hats and steel capped boots. Face masks are also very commonly worn in dusty conditions. To the uninitiated this might seem lame and unnecessary, but it isn’t. You only need to speak to a hazardous materials consultant to find out the effects of inhaling something like asbestos. It is seriously dangerous and can leave you suffering a slow and painful death. So, beware at all times to comply with the safety regulations, and, if they seem a little lax to you, then ask the foreman and make sure that there are no corners being cut.

Know your history

Because they are always digging, blasting and breaking things down, construction workers frequently come across long buried or forgotten relics. Be very aware of this and if you think that you may have stumbled on ancient ruins or graves, don’t just plough on regardless, stop and call a supervisor. It may well be nothing but similarly there have been many stories in recent times about the discovery of ancient burial sites or roman-era constructions.

Don’t be the stereotype

The days of men working on construction sites and whistling at the women who walk past are long gone. Construction is now a reputable job and indeed, many people make a career out of it. The world has come a long way from the era of leery behaviour and making women feel uncomfortable for dressing nicely. Wolf whistles are more likely to end up with you being labelled as a Harvey Weinstein than with you ending up on a date with the targeted lady. So, show some class and enjoy yourself – just not at somebody else’s expense.

Don’t cut corners

There is often a temptation to cut corners or to do a half-baked job. This is maybe something that you can get away with in an office environment where you are filing papers or answering telephone calls, but it is not a good idea in the world of construction. Buildings where corners have been cut have the tendency to collapse and that is not something that you want to be associated with. Do the job properly, no matter how others may try to influence you. Follow the plans drawn up by the engineers and architects and use the materials required in appropriate measures. Make sure that you can be proud of the product that you helped to build.

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