Objects falling from above can pose a serious work-site danger, and employees are at increased risk when they are beneath ladders or scaffolds, or when others are working above them.
The following list suggests some practical things employers can do to prevent injuries from falling and flying objects:
- Ensure employees always wear a well-maintained hard hat. Excessive exposure to paint, certain cleaning agents, sunlight and heat can all weaken hard hats. As such, hard hats should be cleaned regularly to prevent deterioration.
- Instruct employees to stack materials securely to prevent them from sliding or falling.
- Prohibit employees from working under moving loads.
- Barricade hazard areas and post warning signs about the dangers on the job site.
- Ensure cranes and hoists are inspected to make sure that wire rope, lifting hooks, and chains are in good condition.
- Avoid exceeding the lifting capacity of cranes and hoists.
- Equip scaffolds with toe boards, screens, and guardrails to prevent objects from falling. Use debris nets, catch platforms or canopies to catch or deflect objects.
- Have employees secure tools and materials to prevent them from falling on others below. When working at a height, instruct employees not to keep things in their pockets.
- Inspect tools to ensure that the protective guards are in good condition before each use.
Keeping in mind the above tips can go a long way toward keeping your employees safe on your work-site.
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