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Safety Tips for Workers on Scaffolding

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Scaffolding is very common with both residential and commercial construction projects. But it is also a dangerous apparatus of construction as many accidents have happened on these apparatuses.

Back in March, a scaffold collapsed in Raleigh, North Carolina causing three deaths. This goes to show how important safety is around scaffolding. It is only a few extra seconds of care that can make a difference. It is not just scaffolding that needs safety, other forms of constructions should prioritize safety as well. Scaffolding suppliers in Canada are required to comply with necessary safety standards. If you are looking for a scaffolding company, Scafom is providing quality scaffolding across North America.

Comply with Standards
Maximized safety can be achieved by following the standards set by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration). 72% of the workers involved in scaffold accidents said that the leading causes were planking, support giving way, falling objects or slipping. Such accidents can be controlled if the construction company or scaffold provider complies with OSHA standards.

These standards have been created only to ensure safety of workers. And if such a framework is already present, then it is the moral and legal responsibility of the company to comply. The numbers are staggering. 602 people died between 2003 and 2006 due to slipping in the United States. This was 45% of the total fatalities with the rest caused by other mishaps. In comparison, 48 deaths were caused by assault or violence and 34 deaths by fire.

OSHA also charges heavy fines on those who do not comply. It fined British Petroleum with 81 million dollars. This goes to show how crucial it is to follow these set standards.

Here are some common scaffolding risks:
  • Bridging of Scaffolding
  • In adequate cross bracing
  • Difficult access to scaffold
  • Absence of guardrails
  • Low quality wood planks

Use Experts Only
Scaffolding should only be done by companies or personal with appropriate licenses and training. A recognized degree, certification or market repute should be considered in choosing the entity to complete this phase of construction.

Make sure to check the scaffold daily. This should be a routine check upbefore start of work and after it. And focus should not only be on scaffolds but also objects around it. Electrical wires, for instance, can prove hazardous in this scenario. It is also recommended that brace between scaffolds and working structures is used.

Know the Requirements
Different scaffold have different requirements. It all depends on the category. One may require guardrail or a fall arrest or even both. Some common examples are:
  • Arial Life requires personal fall arrest
  • Chicken Ladder requires either fall arrest or guardrail
  • Needle Beam also requires fall arrest
  • Single or Two Point requires both fall arrest and guardrail

Safety can never be enough. It is you job to ensure that scaffolding of your construction project is adequate and in compliance with OSHA standards. You can easily find scaffolding suppliers in Canada that comply with OSHA and give safety a high regard.

Mark Rodgers

Some say he’s half man half fish, others say he’s more of a seventy/thirty split. Either way he’s a fishy bastard.