CIF Safety Week Day 3 – Safe Working at Height

The theme for day 3 is Safe Working at Height, including the use of MEWPs, cherry pickers, scaffolding and ladders.

At Easca Group, the health and safety of our staff is our priority. Below are the key messages we communicate to our team when working at height.

According to the Health and Safety Authority (HSA), working at height is defined as: “work in any place, including a place at, above or below ground level, where a person could be injured if they fell from that place. Access and egress to a place of work can also be work at height”.

The key messaging from the HSA to ensure safe working at height is as follows:

  • Carry out risk assessments for work at height activities and make sure that all work is planned, organised, and carried out by a competent person.
  • Follow the ‘General Principles of Prevention’ for managing risks from work at height, taking steps to avoid, prevent or reduce risks.
  • Chose appropriate work equipment and prioritise collective measures to prevent falls (such as guard rails and working platforms) before other measures which may only reduce the distance and consequences of a fall (such as nets or airbags) or may only provide fall-arrest through personal protection equipment.

The HSA affords access to a wealth of information on its webpage: https://www.hsa.ie/eng/Topics/Work_at_Height/

HILTI recommends three methods to be employed to make working at height safer:

  1. Cordless Tools – not only are they lighter than regular tools, but the absence of a cord means they’re perfect for working at height and avoiding potentially dangerous tangles.
  2. Tool Tethers – to prevent dropping a tool when working at height, a tool tether is a preventative measure. The shock-absorbing bungee-style tether will catch a dropped tool, reducing damage and preventing injury to workers.

Direct Fastening – direct fastening is a great alternative to traditional drilling and fixing methods, which typically require more tools and moving parts, not to mention movements. Products such as the DX pole tool allow for work to be undertaken from the ground, eliminating work at height.

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