Working on scaffoldings has always been challenging as it involves risks and danger to human life. Therefore, it is essential that both the contractor and the laborers should have proper knowledge about the safety tips to be observed while working on scaffolds.
The set of procedures and rules that need to be followed while working on scaffolding structures in order to prevent accidents is known as scaffolding safety. There could be several reasons for these accidents, for example, accidental falls, electrocution, slipping while carrying weight, etc. In order to prevent such accidents, it is important that the contracting company provide proper training to workers about safety procedures and potential hazards while working on the scaffolding.
Do’s and Don’ts of Using a Scaffold
To help keep the workers safe while working on heights at scaffolds, some do’s and don’ts should be kept in mind in order to prevent accidents. A list of these do’s and don’ts is listed below.
- Do make necessary arrangements to provide training to the workers.
- Do check the scaffolding properly using the inspection checklist to ensure that it is safe to use.
- Do provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the workers.
- Do have proper knowledge about the weight limit of the scaffolding.
- Do place barriers around the base of the structure in order to prevent contact with vehicles, etc.
- Do check in advance that the structure is safe from the top as well and no power lines are in its way or touching it.
- Do check the weather conditions prior to setting up the structure as it can pose many hazards in extreme weather conditions like heavy rainfall and strong winds.
- Do make sure the availability of ladders for climbing.
- Do follow the manufacturer’s instructions while installing and dismantling.
- Don’t cross the weight limit ever.
- Don’t stand near the guardrails or extensions.
- Don’t ever start working on a structure that seems unstable or poorly fixed.
- Don’t work on the scaffold in poor weather.
- Don’t climb on the structure while you have things or tools in your hand.
- Don't use the scaffold when there is water or mud on it as it can cause slipping hazards.
- Don’t remove warning signs before making sure that the place is clear.
- Don't jump between the frames.
- Don’t move the mobile scaffold when someone is working on it.
Scaffolding Safety Tips
It is very important that safety measures should be kept in mind while working at heights or at temporary structures like scaffolding. Some of the important safety tips while working on scaffolds are described below.
PPE stands for Personal Protective Equipment. It is ruled all over the world when people have to work in sensitive areas or where risk is involved, they should be provided with proper safety gear in order to protect them from any hazards. The same is the case with people working at heights. One of the most important safety tips is to provide the laborers with proper safety gear or PPE so that they can be safe on the site and accidents can be prevented.
Always follow the Weight Limits
Scaffolding is a temporary structure therefore, it is built with a certain load-carrying capacity. That is why it is always recommended that heavy components that exceed the weight limit should not be carried on the scaffold. This can lead to an increased risk of accidents that could include accidental falls of the worker, fall of the structure or part of the structure, etc. Exceeding the weight limits poses a great risk of accidental hazards.
Follow the Rules and Regulations
Every field of work has a certain set of rules and standards that should be followed in order to prevent unforeseen circumstances. The same is the case with the building and construction industry. The set of rules and standards may vary from country to country but some basic things remain the same. Therefore, before setting up a scaffolding the contractor should be fully aware of the rules and standards regarding scaffolds. Moreover, the workers should also be trained properly so that they can follow the procedures and save themselves from harmful circumstances. By following these rules, many accidents and hazards can be prevented.
Properly Check Scaffolding Material
Another safety tip suggests that before setting up the structure, the material used should be checked properly. There should not be any defective or damaged parts used in the making of the working platform. Make sure to bring all parts from the same manufacturer in order to ensure quality and avoid mismatching parts. Never compromise on the structural efficiency of the material being used.
Follow the Manufacturer’s Instructions
Whether you are installing or dismantling the scaffolding in Norwich, you should follow all the instructions from the manufacturer in order to prevent hazards and difficult situations. Do not try to make your own design and make sure that all the braces and ties are fastened properly according to the instructional manual.
A competent Supervisor should be Present
Whenever you are installing or dismantling the platform, there must be an experienced supervisor present on the spot who is able to look after the whole process technically. A competent person is the one who is trained to supervise the installation and dismantling of such structures.
Keep the Weather in Mind
When you are setting up a scaffolding at a certain place, you should be aware of the weather conditions in that area. You should have prior knowledge and updates about the upcoming weather in that area because extreme weather like strong winds and heavy rainfall can be very dangerous for the structure and can cause accidents.
Proper training and knowledge are the key factors that can help prevent accidental hazards while using a scaffold. Whoever is going to set up the structure should be fully trained and experienced to do the work because this is going to involve or risk many lives.