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  • Dirty Jobs (Like Chipping Concrete): Somebody’s Got to Do ‘em

Anyone familiar with the Discovery Channel’s former “Dirty Jobs” program knows that host Mike Rowe regularly got himself into sticky — often dangerous — situations, all in the name of education. The program’s premise was to show the world what some of the hardest workers out there endure each day, and one episode stands out as a General Chipping favorite.

During the fifth season of “Dirty Jobs,” episode 20 found Mike rolling up his sleeves to try his hand at chipping concrete. And, as he soon learned, the work is no walk in the park. In fact, when asked to pick the all-time dirtiest jobs out of the hundreds he tried out on air, he placed concrete chipping front and center.

Concrete chipping is a highly specialized field, with only a handful of companies nationwide taking on the work. And, although rewarding, it doesn’t come without its risks. One key issue Mike took note of? The small spaces within which we work. The tight confines of a mixing drum can lead to limited ventilation, while — as the brave host experienced — it takes a fair amount of effort to squeeze through the drum’s narrow entrances and exits. Of course, that’s just the beginning to the risks present on the job site. Here are a few other key dangers associated with concrete chipping work:

  • Flying Debris: When you’re chipping away at hardened concrete within a confined space, the material has a tendency to fly anywhere it pleases. A worker standing in the wrong place at the wrong time could experience cuts, bruises or life-altering blows to the body. Proper personal protective equipment (PPE) is a staple for any job site practicing concrete chipping work.
  • The Potential for Hearing Loss: The use of handheld jackhammers inside concrete mixing drums creates deafening sounds that wreak havoc on one’s ears. Proper hearing protection is crucial to helping concrete chippers sidestep hearing loss and related issues.
  • Airborne Dust: As team members chip away from hardened concrete along drum walls, it fills the air with cement dust. Special ventilators and eye protection are a must on the job, as particles can lead to lung disease, eye irritation and similar concerns.

Concrete chipping work might not be easy, but it plays an important role in keeping ready mix truck drums healthy and ready to tackle your crew’s work. For more information on how our crew takes on our dirty jobs, or to book your next concrete chipping appointment, contact General Chipping. Our team would be happy to help!

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