Fall Protection & Prevention
On average, 270 construction workers died from falls each year.
There are 279 reasons for using fall protection.
That’s the approximate number of fall fatalities in the construction industry, from two thousand twelve.
Falls are the leading cause of death in construction.
Now, OSHA requires fall protection be provided at elevations of:
- Four feet in general industry workplaces
- Five feet in shipyards
- Six feet in the construction industry
- and eight feet in longshoring operations.
OSHA also requires that fall protection be provided when working over dangerous equipment and machinery, regardless of the fall distance.
To prevent falling injuries, employers must:
- Secure each ground level hole—mark it, cover it, put workers on notice.
- Provide a guard rail and toe-board around elevated open platforms, floors, or runways. Same thing when accessing any work over machinery or dangerous equipment, like open liquid tanks or conveyor belts—regardless of height.
- Wear the necessary protective gear on certain jobs, including safety harnesses, lines, and safety nets.
- Remember: prevention is the best practice. Set up the work place or jobsite to prevent employees from falling into holes or from elevated structures.
Until next time, stay positive and stay safe. (WS)
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