Safety first is an extremely important concept when it comes to the construction industry and nowhere is this more important than when dealing with scaffold equipment. Missteps when it comes to safety on this equipment can be extremely costly and can result in serious injury or even death. So what are out tips for remain safe on a scaffold?
Make a checklist
Maintaining a Safe Work Method statement is a legal requirement for any business working with high risk construction equipment. If you’re working with a scaffold system then it’s essential that you make a checklist of all safety requirements and avoid any potential hazards. Make a checklist of all the steps you need to take to ensure a safe work worksite. Ask yourself whether or not the footing is level? You should also check whether or not it is full secure, whether all the components are in conditions and whether or not everything has been carefully constructed.
In many cases unsafe practices from employees can be a serious issue when it comes to safety around scaffold equipment. Employees must be trained to work on the equipment but can sometimes still work with little regard for health and safety standards and can put themselves and others in danger. The potential for unsafe work practice or non-compliance is a serious issue and prevention is key. The best way to avoid this safety issue is by ensuring that all employees are properly certified, that they maintain their certifications and that regular training is performed.
Secure the scaffold
Equipment must be properly braced or secured to the building that you’re working on. The equipment should also be protected from the elements with shades or chain mesh, this helps to protect workers from falling materials. Without properly bracing and securing the equipment it could blow over or collapse which could cause serious injury or death for workers on or near the equipment as well as damage to the equipment and building.
An important safety feature on scaffold equipment is handrails. The design of your equipment should include handrails and should face away from the building if you’re equipment is more than 3 metres off the ground. Workers need something to grasp onto at all time and mid-rails should also be included.
Keep things tidy
The workspace around your equipment should be kept neat and tidy. Obstructions can be a serious hazard, causing workers to trip and fall. Tools, debris and other equipment should never be left laying around.
Maintenance and inspections
Regular maintenance and inspections of equipment are a must. You should regularly ensure that the components of your equipment are inspected and undergo maintenance to help to ensure the safety of your workers.
Personal protective equipment
Personal protective equipment is significantly important when it comes to working on high-risk equipment. Non-slip footwear and proper head protection are a must have for workers. Fall protection may also be necessary depending on the height that your workers are working at. If your workers will be up high then you should make sure they have a safety harness in place.
Check skill levels
Different types of work involve different skill levels on this equipment. Simple painting jobs at low heights will only require basic or intermediate skills but more complicated jobs and equipment will required more advanced levels of skills and complications. This is an important thing to keep in mind when working with equipment on any type of job. Make sure the workers you’re using have the appropriate level of skill to use the equipment in the right way.