If you run a construction company or other business that required your workers to use lifting equipment or crane services, you want to make the situation as safe as possible. To protect workers, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set up specific rules and regulations to prevent falls at work. The good news is that fewer American workers are being hurt or becoming ill at work. In 1972, there were 10.9 incidents reported per 100 workers. In 2011, that number was reported at only 3.4 incidents per 100 workers. That drop can be attributed to a number of factors. When it comes to safety procedures, it is critical that companies follow the OSHA fall protection process. They list three steps that are critically important for fall prevention. Their three steps are plan, provide and train. This is a general explanation of what they mean by each.
Before you start a project or job, you need to make a plan to complete it safely.
They say that a “failure to plan is a plan to fail.” Never is that statement more true than when you are talking about safety on a job site. All projects and jobs are carefully planned out before they are started. Part of that planning process needs to include a plan for how the job will be done in a safe way. It is the employer’s responsibility to carefully plan a project so that safety will be a priority.
Any projects that will require certain equipment such as scaffolds, cranes or ladders be used to be successfully be completed need to have a safety plan. This means you have to defining each task that needs to be done, determine how each task in the project will be approached and completed and you need to work out what safety equipment will be needed for each step.
According to OSHA fall protection rules, different tasks need different safety equipment. Before a job is started, companies look at what tools equipment they will need to complete the job. That list needs to include the safety equipment, including personal fall arrest systems (PFAS), other fall protection equipment that might be needed. Different jobs require the use of different kinds of fall protection supplies. You need to factor in the costs of this equipment when you are planning the costs of a job just as much as you would include any other tool or piece of equipment you will need to do the job correctly.
Make sure you provide your workers with all of the equipment that they need.
It is not enough to know what equipment you need, you have to take the next step and make it available to the people working on your projects. You need to make sure your worksites are outfitted with the right kinds of safety equipment, ladders, scaffolds and crane baskets.
The equipment supplied needs to match the needs of the job. Not every piece of scaffolding or ladder will work for every job. You need to match up the safety equipment and all of the tools and systems that are being used on a worksite with the job that is being completed. Companies have a lot of options when it comes to following the OSHA fall protection rules but the right equipment needs to be provided in all cases.
If you have fall protection systems, you need each worker to have their own harness. This has to be tied up to an anchor system. The harnesses need to fit properly and the workers need to pay attention to the condition of all of the components in these systems. They should be inspected both before and after they are used on a shift. Any equipment that is not in great condition needs to be replaced.
All workers need to be trained to use safety equipment the right way.
None of the safety equipment mandated by the OSHA fall protection rules will make any difference if workers do not know how to use it properly. Employers have to provide appropriate training for all of the equipment that will be used on a job.
With some work and planning, you can follow OSHA fall protection rules and keep your workers safe.