Your safety is essential, so, regardless of any height you are working at, there are some measures you can put into place to ensure you remain safe. A single mistake can turn your routine into a fatality or a severe injury. Working at a height means working at a distance above the ground. At this distance, you can fall and injure yourself. If you use a ladder, a loading dock, or working on the edge of a roof, you are working at a height. Typically, you need fall protection if you work at an elevation higher than 4 feet.
This article shows you various ways you can apply to remain safe while working at heights.
Understanding Fall Distance
Understanding fall distance is critical as it explains the type of protective gear you need. Remember that your protective gear needs to engage before hitting an object; otherwise, it’ll be pointless to wear it. Probably, you’ve been at a construction site and seen men working at 15 feet while wearing a six-foot lanyard with a deceleration device. That should always work, but it fails at times.
When deployed, your fall distance must include your lanyard’s length, plus your body length below any sag in your anchor system and harness. Otherwise, this can be not good. In this case, an 18.5’ minimum is ideal before counting the 6-foot lanyard with a deceleration device.
Tips To Remain Safe While Working At A Height
There are many ways workers can employ to reduce fatalities at workplaces or homes. Below are the most affordable yet effective tips.
- Use Railing: Railings offer passive protection, and it is the most recommended and easiest way to keep workers safe. This method doesn’t require any training. Typically, you need to stay within the rails to remain safe. Almost every rooftop has a specific railing system – for instance, you can use the parapet mounted railing, non-penetrating railing, metal roof railing, etc. Regardless of the type, these rails are effective at preventing you from falling.
- Proper PPE: note that the correct height safety sydney system require the right equipment. Alternatively, you can use full-body harnesses that meet ANSI standards. Though it effectively protects people who work at heights, it comes at a much higher price. Before choosing a personal protective, research to ensure you are buying something that suits your needs. For instance, if you weld at heights, Kevlar works better than a standard nylon harness. Again, comfort is essential.
- Choose a Good Anchor Point: the choice anchor point must hold the weight. So, it must be well engineered to hold the expected loads or 5,000-pound load. Of course, many structures won’t hold these forces; but a properly installed roofing anchor or structural steel with a beam clamp can hold.
- Use the right equipment: there is specific equipment designed for working at heights. Standard equipment you’ll use is the ladder, scaffold, and lift. While both serve the same function, they may not work similarly for the same job. For instance, you may find a scaffold suitable while painting or cleaning low-level windows. In this case, add railing to the scaffoldings – makes fall protection easier to address. However, you may prefer using a lift in other cases, which you may or may not need to wear a harness and lanyard. If you find yourself on a ladder, fall protection becomes trickier.