Working and performing tasks at height is part of day to day requirements in work and leisure. It is therefore essential to ensure that those performing activity at height stay safe and protected from all potential risks to safety and health. We supply products that ensure every worker deployed at height comes homes safely.
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Safety Tips for Working at Height What is work at height? Before we discuss, what are the safety tips that workers can adopt at height, let’s understand first what work at height is? Work at height means someone is working above the ground floor and could fall, if precautions were not taken or due to fragile surface. Work at height can involve: Working above ground or floor level. Working within confined space Could fall from the edge of a raised platform Working on fragile surfaces such as floors above a void or fragile roofs. Places with the possibility of high risk of falling through an opening either on ground level or from upper level. For example, holes in floor, manholes, excavations, and pits. A slip or a trip on the level does not come under work at height because a fall from height has to embroil a fall from one level to a lower level. Likewise, it does not include walking up and down a permanent staircase in a building as well. Why safety is needed while working at height? Whenever we talk about ‘working at height’, what is the first thing that comes to your mind? Safety, isn’t it? Whether you are working at heights on a daily basis or just once in a while, your attention on safety during those times is of utmost importance. It takes one mistake or one second to turn a routine work task into fatality. Falls are debilitating and deadly as well. Employers have to be very careful and prepared to protect the employees each and every time they could be exposed. 8 Safety Tips to Consider While Work at Heights. Use Rails In order to keep your workers safe and achieve compliance, passive protection seems as the easiest way because there is nothing that they do actually to keep themselves safe other than stay within the rails. Either use rails that are built by jobsite carpenters or use pre-fabricated rails from a manufacturer. Pre-fabricated railings can be everlastingly affixed or portable to suit your requirements. Regardless of what safety thing are you using, you will discover rails are the easiest fall protection system to use. Select the Proper PPE
Whether you are using Personal protective equipment (PPE) or Personal Fall Arrest Systems (PFAS), make sure you’re picking up the right equipment. Use full-body harnesses that meet ANSI standards to protect you from high risk of fall. Apart from harnesses, you can also opt other personal equipment such as safety helmets, gloves, high-visibility clothing, eye protection, safety footwear and safety harnesses. Select the PPE as per the nature of workforce and your requirement Select the lanyards properly depending on the height at which you are working. Inspect Your PPE Inspection of equipment that you are using plays a major role in keeping your life safe. So, it is advisable to do proper research and inspection of PPE that you are going to opt while working at height. When it comes to lanyards and harnesses, they need to be sporadically inspected by a well- experienced person with the knowledge to identify the hazard and the authority to correct it. This brief pre-work check could save a life. 4. Ensure You Understand Fall Distance You can wear all kinds of fall protection equipment in the world, but if it permits you to hit the lower level before it engrosses, it’s pointless to use. Sounds weird, right? Perhaps, you would be surprised if you get to know that many workers are still unaware of the distance they are working on. Many workers wear 6’ lanyard with a deceleration device at 10-12’ off the ground. With this you are more vulnerable to risk of fall! Your actual fall distance needs to include the length of your lanyard when deployed plus your body length below the D-ring and any sag in your anchor system. Before you’re able to use a 6’ lanyardwith deceleration device, count on a good 18.5’ minimum. 5. Ensure the Selection of Acceptable Anchor Point Safety anchor point is a crucial domain of a fall protection system. They are usually deployed on the roof and are being used to connect lifelines, lanyards, and other forms of tie-off that protect workers from falling. See, what the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says about the parameters for a safe anchorage point in Section 1910.66 (Appendix C):
“Anchorages to which personal fall arrest equipment is attached shall be capable of supporting at least 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN) per employee attached, or shall be designed, installed, and used as part of a complete personal fall arrest system which maintains a safety factor of at least two, under the supervision of a qualified person.” “The anchorage should be rigid, and should not have a deflection greater than .04 inches (1 mm) when a force of 2,250 pounds (10 kN) is applied.” It is very easy to handle and as simple as a D-ring connection. There are two types of fall protection anchors available i.e. permanent and temporary fall protection anchors. Along with the inspection of PPE, you should also take care of selection of acceptable anchor point. 6. Use Ladders Properly We all have used ladders at home like to hang our Christmas lights, clean the gutters, paint the living room, or change the high-hat bulb. But the usage of ladders at construction areas is quite different. Ensure that ladder is the best way to do what you’re doing. Provide proper training to your employees to let them recognize the proper usage of it. Employers have to ensure that their employees know about this 3’ extension, 4:1 ratio, 3 points of contact, and secured before using extension ladders. 7. Ensure Proper Use of Lifts Lift is one of the easiest ways to go up and down if working at height. Consider the points before using it. Any worker must be properly tied-off if using a boom lift, at any time, at any height. “Properly tied-off” not only keeps you secured to the engineered anchor point associated with the lift, but it also does not wrap the lanyard around the rails. Things with Scissor lifts are quite different. There is no regulatory requirement to get tied- off properly in a scissor lift. However, while using the lift make sure your gate and chain is closed and secured, respectively. Keep your feet planted firmly on the platform. 8. Train, Train, Train
Nowadays, there are many types of equipment available in the industrial field but still the accidents occur. Do you know the reason? The answer is very simple — they are not properly trained. According to the OSHA coverage, 14 deaths occur every day at construction sites. And, improper training is one of the major reasons behind this. So, it would be advisable to provide proper training to your employees to let them work safely at heights. Risk of fall will be zero down if employees utilize the equipment properly. The Hierarchy of Control In order to control deaths or fatalities, one can follow the hierarchy of control: Eradicate the requirement for working at height if possible. Trim down the time workers spend at height by doing as much preparation as possible at the ground level prior to commencing work. Segregate the hazard by means of edge protection, guardrails, and fencing, etc. Arrange warning signs to indicate the danger. Carry safety personal protective equipments and fall prevention systems Discipline: oInstruction – make sure employees know what they are likely to do. oTraining – employees must be experienced and competent. oSupervision – work should be pre-planned and monitored before execution. oInformation – employees must be aware of risks, hazards alongside emergency procedures. Being an employer or as an employee, it is important that you keep reasonable care to provide safety for one and all. It is important to ensure that relevant fall protection kits should be used to prevent off-the-ground fall accidents at construction sites. Following the above mentioned instructions a worker can equip himself with the knowledge of right attitude while working at height.