Whenever you are working at heights, there will be some level of risk present. The risk level can fluctuate significantly depending on how many safety precautions you take. When you are safely equipped with the appropriate gear, working at height doesn’t have to present any danger. On the contrary, working at heights can be perfectly safe as long as you follow the necessary protocols.
Working at an elevated height can be a fear for some people. However, you can overcome this fear with working at heights training. The training will inform you about the various risks associated with heights and how to best mitigate the immediate danger. After the training, you will understand the best safety tips when working at heights. If you find yourself working with heights, keep in mind the following safety tips to protect yourself:
1. Take working at heights training
Before you begin to work at heights, you need to receive a significant level of working at height training. To work safely while at an elevated position, you will have to ensure that you follow your training at all times. Sometimes, the guidelines here may seem obvious, and you may inadvertently ignore them. Not only is this dangerous in the short term, but you risk putting others in danger as well. Studies have demonstrated that construction falls are the leading cause of death within the industry. To work safely each time, stay educated, informed, and prepared about the role at every turn.
2. Wear the right safety equipment
As with all occupations that have immediate dangers involved, personal protection equipment must be worn. When working at heights, the type of equipment the worker outfits themselves with can vary. However, depending on the context of the role, some components can vary accordingly. For starters, many workers will wear harnesses at all times while on the job. This is to ensure that, in the event of an accident, the worker does not fall off their platform. Lanyards may also vary in dimensions, but they will also be a pivotal aspect of personal protection equipment. Keeping the worker safe at all times is crucial after all!
3. Use anchor points
Anchor points are an important part of working at heights safely. For the most part, an anchor point should be able to support two things when working at heights. First, it needs to support the weight of the worker in question. In addition, it has to be able to withstand about five thousand pounds per person attached. Things can become tricky here, since good anchor points may not be able to support those forces. As a result, it should be discussed with your superior as to what is acceptable as a good anchor point. Documentation that has been approved by an engineer will be a good start, when figuring this step out.
4. Use ladders properly
Sometimes, a worker does not need to go very high up in order to work on their project. As a result, a simple ladder of a chosen height will be all that is required. However, the same safety rules will still apply here. Should you improperly use one, like standing on a step that can’t take much weight, you could harm yourself!
5. Limit how high you go
Many jobs that require working at an elevated position can differ, due in part to how high you need to work from. Some workers may be working via a scaffold, while others may be working in an elevator. No matter what sort of environment you are in, make sure that you know your height and prepare accordingly. The risks of working at a higher position increase the higher you have to go. As such, you should be selective with the height that you work with and know your immediate surroundings. By doing this, you ensure that your security is reliable at all times.
6. Use railings
There are various pieces of equipment that can amplify the protection you have while on the job. Platforms should come equipped with railings of some kind to protect your immediate vicinity. By staying within these rails, you ensure that you don’t accidentally fall over the platform. These platforms are easy to shake, due in part to factors such as the windy weather. Railings will help you to maintain a safe level of balance overall.
7. Calculate fall distance
Before you head into your designated role, be sure to understand the potential fall distance present. This will help you determine what sort of equipment is needed, so that you know exactly how to best prepare yourself. Working at any given height can be stressful, to say the least. There are so many internal and external factors that have to be considered, even before you kickstart your lift. However, preparation prior to starting your job will keep you safe. Remember your training, and you will be just fine in the long run!