National Safety Stand-Down, May 8-12
May 8-12 is 2017 National Safety Stand-Down Week to raise awareness and prevent falls in the construction industry. The Stand-Down began in 2012 as an opportunity for employers and employees to have open discussions about the risk of falls, preventative measures, goals and expectations (company polices).
Falls account for one third (1/3) of all on-the-job injuries and death in construction. In the US, more than 300 construction workers are killed, and over 10,000 are injured every year.
Without question, every fall can be prevented.
Three critical factors can ensure Wachs never has even an injury related to falls:
- Plan ahead (Discussion, Workplace Exam, JHA, Follow-up)
- Provide the right equipment
- Train every affected employee/subcontractor on equipment and expectations.
With safety being a cornerstone to our values we must ensure that when it comes to scaffolding:
- Training must be provided by a qualified person who has documentation that shows he recognizes the hazards associated with the type of scaffold being used, and understands the procedures to control or minimize those hazards. For those who will utilize the scaffolding their training must include how to safely:
- Use the scaffold and determine the maximum load limits when handling materials.
- Recognize and avoid scaffolding hazards such as electric shock, falls from heights, and being hit by falling objects.
- Training must be documented.
- We must follow the manufacturer's allowable load for the casters, scaffold components and platforms, along with recommended bracing to ensure a rigid and structurally sound scaffold.
- We assess the work area, site conditions, and work to be performed, prior to erecting a scaffold.
- We conduct a pre-operation inspection to verify that all scaffold components are functioning properly and/or are correctly assembled.
- Keep the platform free from tripping hazards such as hand tools, equipment, or materials.
- Lock scaffold wheels to prevent movement while in use.
- Use guardrails which include top rails, mid-rails, and toe boards, or fall protection at working platform heights of 10 feet or higher.
- Stay at least 10 feet away from energized power lines.
- If outriggers are installed, deploy installed outriggers on both sides of the scaffold. All locking pins must be engaged before using the scaffold.
For specific information on Narrow Frame Scaffolds, visit https://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3722.html