Are you working safe? Four safety checks before working at height
23 April 2018 10:03:45 GMT
You should only ever carry out work at height if you feel completely safe and in control of what you are doing. Sometimes in their haste to get a task done, people will disregard important safety precautions, but this can put you in a risky situation for no reason. Before you do any work at height you should ask yourself these safety questions.
Are you working at height unnecessarily?
Firstly, you need to establish whether you are working at height when actually there is no reason to do so. Clearly, given inherent risks of working off the ground, it is better to avoid it entirely if at all possible, and you may be surprised to find that there are ways to carry out the work without having to reach for a ladder or scaffold tower.
For example if you are getting work done around the house and need to clean the windows you might think nothing of climbing a ladder to reach the top floor when it would be safer to use an extending window cleaning brush allowing you to work from the ground. Alternatively you may find that you are able to carry out tasks from a high level without using access equipment, for example accessing the area through a window on a higher floor.
Are you using the right equipment?
If you have decided that you need to work at height to get the job done, then it is essential that you ensure you are making use of the right equipment. Having a ladder to hand is certainly convenient, but if it is not suitable for the job you want to carry out, you can actually be putting yourself at risk.
Whether you are attempting to use a ladder that isn’t tall enough for the task or if there is a specific piece of equipment that would allow you to carry out the task more safely, do think about the equipment you are using before you get started on a task. It may even be the case that it would be sensible to use a scaffold tower.
Are you working alone?
Working at height is naturally dangerous but it can be even more so if you work alone. If you are attempting to carry out tasks by yourself you should first make sure that someone knows where you are and what you are doing so that they can come and check you are still alright every so often. Falling from a height and injuring yourself can be even riskier if no-one is around to summon aid if you need it.
Are you wearing the right gear for the job?
You should always make sure that you are wearing the right clothing and safety gear for the task. Sensible footwear is a must for any work at height but you may also need safety glasses and ear defenders depending on the type of work you are carrying out.