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Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction

- May 1, 2018 by Leslie Stoll, CSP, ARM (View all posts by Leslie)

Next week, mySafetynews.com will be publish blogs in conjunction with OSHA’s National Safety Stand-Down week May 7-11, 2018. We encourage all of our insureds to take part in the annual event by focusing on fall prevention.

How can you participate?

It’s simple! Just put a little more effort into your current safety meetings that focuses on fall prevention like equipment inspections, reviewing specific elements of your fall protection plan for feasibility, conducting a facility review for unrecognized and uncontrolled fall hazards, asking employees to don their fall protection harnesses for a fit check, or simply sharing a fall related story at a safety meeting. Interested in seeing what others have done for the day? Check out OSHA’s site highlighting past years.

The key to a successful stand-down is enthusiasm and making the meeting a little bit different than a normal safety meeting. Let your staff know that this is important and that you are participating in the National Stand-Down Day to be part of the safety community. We encourage everyone who chooses to participate in the Stand-down to take photos. You can post your photos using OSHA’s hashtag #StandDown4Safety.

If you are looking for support materials, stay tune to our blog and social media accounts for updates. OSHA’s also has a list a safety resources for the day that you might want to check out ahead of time.

To get you thinking about the week, I’ve listed a few ideas below:

  • Do you have a plan to rescue employees if they fall while wearing their fall protection equipment? If not, this is the perfect time to create that plan.
  • Do employees really understand how personal fall protection works? Have you explained the common sense fact often missed, that a 6 ft lanyard won’t protect you from a 6 ft fall!
  • Do you have manufacturing equipment with raised work platforms? If its above 4 ft off the ground you need to protect the edges. If it’s less than 4 ft off the ground, railing may still be a good idea. Safety shouldn’t stop at compliance, think about injury potential.
  • What about non-routine tasks? Are your employees properly protected for those once a year activities or are they taking risks because it’s easier? Just because the frequency is low, doesn’t mean the severity of the injury is.
  • Is your industry exposed to falls that everyone accepts? If so, now is is the perfect time to hold a brainstorming session for new ideas. Just because that’s how every does it, doesn’t mean a better idea isn’t possible.

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