Work at Height

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Working at height involves working in any place with all preventive safety measures in place. However, failing to take precautionary measures leads to serious injury or death. We come across the incidents like people falling from workplaces, where most of the investigation report concludes that working at height procedure was flouted one way or other. The quantum of hazard could be serious or normal, but employers need to pay price in terms of compensation. Further, work gets delayed and it would make negative impact on the morale of other workers as well. Taking into cognizance of these aspects, working at height training is highly essential to implement safety measures.

Working at height is seen across industries like construction, windmill, oil and gas, agriculture, electrical power generation, transportation, and so on. Employees working in these industries are always at high risk as their tasks involve using equipment like ladder, crane, mobile elevated working platform, and tower scaffolds. Working on these platforms is always prone to hazards. Factors contributing to work at height hazards are lack of hazard assessment, inadequate supervision, and improper use of personal protective equipment. Scaffold is one such equipment considered as safe working platform mostly used for working at height.

However, information should be collected regarding safe access, stable foundation, safe working load, adhering to instruction of manufacturer and routine inspection, prior to start of work by a competent person. All these information comes under the purview of scaffolding inspection and failing to do so leads to more number of working at height accidents. Further, lack of fall prevention protection and non-compliance of working at height regulations are other reasons yields in serious injury to workers. Hence, as a preemptive measure, basic scaffolding inspection is must by a competent person before use. Moreover, workers working on the scaffolding platform should be trained in safe operating procedures.

In addition, a worker while working at height must use restraint technique, so that his physical movement would be restricted in case of fall risk. The technique requires higher level of skill for safe operation, which also requires great supervision. Similarly, in case of misuse of working at height fall arrest system equipment might lead to worker hitting the ground. To prevent injury, workers need working at height guidance to integrate health and safety goal at workplace.

Based on the above, it could be highlighted that working at height training course provided by NIST is imperative and vital for safety preparedness to deal with hazards. Corporates would benefit, if they follow working at height best practice. This is feasible by providing working at height awareness training, which in turn would robust safety posturing. As a result, workers would equip themselves with knowledge on utilizing working at height safety barriers, which in turn will assist in minimizing unsafe acts while tackling hazards effectively.

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