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Topics: Loss Control
Summary: Preventing falls at the workplace is essential to employee safety, especially for those who work at heights in the construction industry. Learn the critical elements of a fall protection safety plan and how to implement it in the workplace.
As we enter the fall season, it's time to get ready for cooler temperatures, earlier sunsets, and an array of stunning colors across the country. However, it's also the beginning of various new challenges for businesses. Fall brings on cold and flu season and daylight savings time that can have an impact on workers' health. Additionally, autumn weather often leads to slippery roads, walkways and sidewalks to due to the rainy, chilly weather or wet, fallen leaves. Worker safety should be in mind throughout the entire year for business owners, and the fall is no different. And, what is one of the leading causes of death for employees, especially those in the construction industry? Falls. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2021 over one-third of construction fatalities were due to falls, slips and trips. Almost all of these were falls from heights to a lower level.
Fall protection refers to any means used to protect workers from falls during work where such hazards exist. This includes areas like stairways, raised platforms, roofs and the use of ladders in general. In these areas, engineering or design measures are used to help reduce the fall hazards; however, further measures such as fall protection devices like lanyards, harnesses and guardrails must be used to help reduce the risk of falls. OSHA created Construction Standards for Fall Protection, which states that employers must provide fall protection if employees are required to work in the situations and conditions outlined in the standards, including those who work on scaffolds, cranes and derricks, perform steel erection work, and those who work from aerial lifts, poles, towers, ladders, and stairways.
Preventing falls in the workplace often begins with having a plan – a set of written procedures. Your plan should clearly lay out procedures for items such as fall prevention training, safe equipment use and inspection of the worksite for any potential hazards.
Make sure your fall protection plan is an essential component of your workplace safety program. Many successful programs contain the following elements:
Employers must provide their employees with the proper equipment and fall prevention measures in order to avoid fall-related injuries. This might include items such as:
The AmTrust Loss Control Department specializes in risk management solutions to prevent injuries and improve employee safety. We can work with your team to identify the specific risks facing your business and implement safety measures to help reduce their impact. To learn more about our loss control services, please contact us today. This material is for informational purposes only and is not legal or business advice. Neither AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. nor any of its subsidiaries or affiliates represents or warrants that the information contained herein is appropriate or suitable for any specific business or legal purpose. Readers seeking resolution of specific questions should consult their business and/or legal advisors. Coverages may vary by location. Contact your local RSM for more information.