Protection From Falling Objects
Are objects falling from height a significant threat on jobsites?
Falling objects are a bigger threat than you might think. According to OSHA, there were 937 workers in private sector construction killed on the job in 2015. Falls were the top offender – and were responsible for nearly 40 percent of those fatalities. But being struck by an object accounted for the second highest total with almost 10 percent.
Do falling objects affect project productivity?
Injury caused by falling objects can put your highly-skilled workers on the sideline when they’re needed the most. But this problem can cause other productivity issues too. Unexpected property damage can add time and expense to a project and high-priced tools can be damaged or destroyed.
Is there equipment that addresses the falling objects risk?
The focus on fall protection equipment has traditionally focused predominantly on protecting workers from falling, not from falling objects. Lanyards, harness and SRLs can be found on nearly every jobsite. But recently, manufacturers have added a variety of specialized tool tethers, holsters, pouches and other equipment to their safety lineup.
What’s the best way to secure tools when you work at height?
Protecting coworkers is everyone’s job. It’s essential to identify or create tether connection points on your tools that don’t have that feature built into their design. And don’t forget to attach the tool’s tether securely to yourself or another suitable anchor point.
Are tools the only risk items to consider when working at height?
The short answer is no. The seemingly innocent contents of buckets, pouches and other containers can quickly become dangerous projectiles if tipped or spilled from above. Always be sure that containers are covered securely whenever they are in use above ground level.
What can your coworkers do to protect themselves from falling objects?
Whenever you’re on the jobsite, be sure you’re wearing an approved hard hat and steel-toed shoes. Padding matters. Ever since the first construction hard hats were used in the building of the Hoover Dam, many lives have been saved.
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