June is National Safety Month so we’d like to “fall into” (pun intended) one of the TOP causes of injuries in manufacturing facilities and warehouses. FALLS – while working at elevations higher than 4′ off the ground. The manufacturing industry comes with specific hazards that can result in tragic outcomes for workers and costly damages for businesses.
Fall protection regulations are covered under OSHA Statutes 1910.28 and 1910.29, standards and policies for the general industry. Since 1970, OSHA has required employers to provide “safe and healthy” workplaces. It’s almost 2020 so we’ve had about 50 years to figure this out!
Train Workers About Job Hazards, Fall Protection, and How To Handle Emergencies
Employees in the manufacturing industry encounter fall hazards daily, such as routinely performing work at heights which have unprotected sides and edges. To prevent accidents, all workers need to be adequately equipped and trained about these hazards in a way that’s meaningful to them.
OSHA believes that training is essential to protecting workers from injuries and illnesses. Along with job hazards, training should focus on:
Fall Protection & Training
Depending upon the application, fall arrest protection systems require the use of safety harnesses and overhead tether track systems.
Workers should be thoroughly trained on how to properly use and inspect the fall protection systems at their workplace.
Equipment safety training should also help them understand why fall arrest equipment is necessary, how to properly fit themselves with harnesses, the limitations of the equipment, and proper care, maintenance, useful life, and disposal of the equipment.
Fall Emergencies & Training
OSHA states all workers involved directly with the work environment must have enough awareness to recognize emergency situations so they can summon fully trained employees during an emergency.
In the event of a fall, coworkers should be well trained on a fall emergency response plan, a thorough understanding of the potentially fatal hazard of suspension trauma, and swift procedures for handling fall incidents to ensure the health and safety of the worker.
Remember, training isn’t always a “one and done” deal. Consider re-training employees each year or every other. It never hurts to refresh workers’ fall protection knowledge, especially for the ones working at dangerous heights.
Invest in Fall Protection Systems
According to OSHA guidelines for falls, any person working at just 4′ or more above ground level is required to have some form of fall protection.
Each manufacturing facility has its own unique hazards and it’s up to employers to choose the right fall protection system for their workers and provide the proper equipment. Consultation from an expert in operating safe applications is crucial to finding the right solution.
Contact our trained safety hazard specialists to conduct an inspection that will identify the proper fall arrest system your application requires. At W.W. Cannon, we take fall protection seriously.
For more information about our company or services, please give us a call at 800-442-3061.
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