Working at heights in construction is fraught with dangers and mishaps. Working at heights necessitates strict adherence to safety regulations. Construction projects contribute for at least 50-60 deaths per year, with over 4000 injuries due to accidents related with working at heights. The painters and decorators who maintain the façade beauty of the building constructions are usually exposed to these threats. Window washing, maintenance work at height, street lamp replacement, tree surgery, and other miscellaneous tasks are performed at great heights. Working at Heights Regulations were drafted, outlining the safety procedures to be followed during such projects. This includes not only building work but also all other tasks that must be completed.
Table of Contents
Work at Height Regulations Hierarchy of Control
According to a study conducted by the Health and Safety Engineer on the past 5-year record of construction incidents, well-designed construction projects have a lower likelihood of attracting hazards and accidents. For the construction of warehouses, factories, public buildings, retail establishments, offices, and other structures, sufficient guard rail dimensions must be given as per the building regulations of that particular area / state. Work at Height Regulations Hierarchy of Control The work at height legislation took a hierarchy of actions to protect workers from mishaps caused by working at heights. They are as follows: Working at a height is avoided to the greatest extent possible. Work is done in a secure location that already exists. To avoid accidents, more equipment-oriented work should be provided.
In a construction project, how do you work at a height? Working at a height in a construction project comes with its own set of dangers and risks. For safety and precautions, it is necessary to understand the safety concerns associated with each type of building activity, such as brick masonry, wall plastering, and painting.Preparing a risk assessment checklist for each job and then following it on the job site is an important first step in working at height. The next step is to train workers on safety risks and dangers. Working at heights necessitates constant supervision by a qualified supervisor. Construction dangers and their control are described in length here, along with how to operate at heights in construction projects.
A Secure Workplace
Construction Risks Associated with Working at Heights and How to Avoid Them Due to the high dynamic nature of the activity, there are numerous hazards that can occur on a construction site. So, rather of having a reactive mind when dealing with such a risky site, it is vital to take precautions. The following are some of the control methods and potential dangers. It is critical to have a safe and transparent entry and exit from the workplace while performing work at heights. Working platforms, scaffolds, ladders, gangways, and material hoists are all examples of units that must be entirely safe so that workers may trust them and do their tasks.
This inspection and repair of working platforms must be done on a regular basis. It is necessary to keep the working environment as clean and tidy as possible. Accidents could otherwise be caused by slipping and tripping. Workplace Accidents and Injured Workers’ Compensation Working at heights might result in serious injury and even death. When operating at heights, it is critical to take extra precautions to protect the personnel. There is no profit in a project if the workers’ safety is not taken into consideration. Roofing, steel work, rendering, cladding, erecting, high-pressure water, concrete repairs, painting, and demolition work, if any, all require safe work systems. Other dangerous issues such as electricity, vibrations, and noise might also have an impact.
Protection Against Falls
The use of fake work is another major source of accidents. False work is a term for temporary constructions that are used to sustain a non-supporting structure while it is being renovated or built. The usage of a wooden structure to support brickwork is one such example. It is always advised that a qualified person employ fraudulent work by designing, erecting, and disassembling it properly. Large-scale accidents have occurred as a result of the collapse of fake work. These incidents at great heights exacerbate the situation. Building cleaning entails grit blasting and high-pressure water jets, both of which are considered hazardous. For high-rise buildings, 30 to 35 stored ones or standing over scaffolding or even ladders is the most common method.
It is critical to safeguard workers, residents, and passers-by from the adverse impacts of debris, dust, noise, flooding of pathways, and, most significantly, falling heavy debris and elements. Workers that deal with the same must wear goggles, gloves, and ear protection. The equipment utilised must be thoroughly cleaned and inspected by qualified professionals. All of the aforementioned necessitates competent monitoring to ensure that the above-mentioned activities are carried out. Working at heights necessitates the use of competent employees. The following are some of the recommendations made by the work at height regulations to safeguard people from falling: If working at a height is required, careful planning and preparation are required before beginning.
Roofs and surfaces that are prone to damage
Working at a height poses a danger, which must be assessed and suitable safety equipment given. If necessary, working near a delicate surface must be carefully planned and controlled.Working at heights necessitates the use of properly inspected and maintained equipment. Any unfavourable equipment behaviour while working at height can result in major problems. Roofs and surfaces that are prone to damage Every year, employees falling from roofs composed of flimsy materials are reported as a serious accident cause. Roof work on pitched roofs is hazardous and necessitates the use of risk management techniques. This must be completed prior to the start of the job. Due to exposure to varying climatic temperatures, these delicate surfaces erode with age, resulting in a loss of strength.
Scaffolding, ladders, and other support platforms will be required if this is the case. There must be warning signs in appropriate areas, as well as evidence that the roof is vulnerable. If the roof is in poor condition, do the following steps: Working beneath the roof must be done with the assistance of a working platform.If a work platform isn’t available, a mobile elevating work platform will suffice. This allows personnel to safely stand on a bucket and complete their tasks. In situations where access to the delicate roof is not possible, perimeter edge protection and staging are required. This helps to distribute the weight. Roofs are vulnerable for a variety of reasons.
Ensure You Understand Fall Distance
Where work at height cannot be avoided, prevent falls by using either an existing safe place of work or the appropriate equipment. Minimize the distance and consequences of a fall by using the appropriate equipment where the risk cannot be eliminated. Prioritize measures that protect everyone at danger (collective protection) over those that simply protect the individual at each phase (personal protection). Equipment that does not require the person working at height to act in order to be effective is known as collective protection. Guardrails, scissor lifts, and tower scaffolds are all examples of permanent or temporary guardrails. Personal protective equipment is equipment that requires the user to act in order for it to work.
Avoid work at height where it’s reasonably practicable to do.
Ensure that employees are instructed and trained to work at height.
Duty holders must: Avoid work at height where they can.