Fall Prevention in the Workplace
Falls are one of the leading causes of injury and death in the workplace according to OSHA. This is because jobs may require employees to work in high and elevated places. And without the right precautions, procedures, and equipment, falls can happen, leading to serious consequences or fatalities.
The good news is that by having an effective fall prevention program, you can protect your employees who perform duties on high platforms such as ladders, scaffoldings, aerial lifts, and catwalks. Let’s delve closer into the importance of having a fall prevention plan and how to prepare your employees to stay safe when working on heights.
The Importance of Fall Prevention Plan
A comprehensive fall prevention plan is important for any workplace with elevated work areas. A fall prevention plan has written procedures that tell you what to do and how to do it safely. It also includes a rescue plan that gives detailed instructions on how to take action if a fall happens. In many cases, death can occur in less than 30 minutes after a serious fall, so having a plan in place is crucial in order to save a life.
GMG EnviroSafe is your peace of mind, creating and putting a fall prevention plan in place for your specific business. Your fall prevention plan will have:
- Rescue procedures: detailed plans for rescue workers in the event of a fall.
- Training: Educating workers on recognizing fall hazards, using equipment properly, and following safety procedures.
- Inspection: Identifying work areas, equipment, and safety procedures.
- Controls: Putting in place precautions in certain locations to reduce fall hazards.
An effective fall protection plan not only educates but prepares employees for potential falls. All plans should be reviewed and updated regularly as worksites and regulations change.
Key Elements of an Effective Fall Prevention Program
Let’s discuss the key elements of an effective fall prevention program. This includes written plans and procedures, outlines of safety measures, and training programs to mitigate risks. Additionally, fall protection is necessary when the fall hazard cannot be eliminated.
Other key elements include:
- Identifying potential fall hazards: highlighting areas needing protection.
- Assessing risks in high work area: ranking fall hazards and prioritizing the most dangerous.
- Establishing proper protective systems: communicating what safety equipment is needed to protect employees.
- Develop a rescue plan: Empower your employees to safely take action and get a fallen worker to safety, which can save a life.
- Outlining training requirements: Ensuring your employees are educated on equipment, safety protocols, and procedures.
- Preventing violations: ensuring your business is in compliance with OSHA and other state and local regulations.
Having a plan in place shows your business’s commitment to safety. The advantage of a fall prevention plan is that it’s a living document that continuously helps improve fall safety.
Tips to Prevent Workplace Slips, Trips, and Falls
In addition to preventing dangerous falls from heights, it’s also important to avoid slips, trips, and minor falls on the same surface level. Having rules and procedures to reduce accidents and hazards can help prevent less serious injuries. Some safe practices and procedures include:
- Enforcing safe practices and rules like setting the right pace for work tasks.
- Installing grip floors or mats in wet areas (if needed).
- Having warning signs for wet floor areas.
- Making sure all walking areas, stairs, and ramps have proper traction and are kept clear of clutter, debris, or other.
- Maintaining lighting in all areas, especially stairwells. Ensure to replace burnt-out bulbs immediately.
- Wearing the right footwear and shoes with slip-resistant soles.
- Removing trip hazards or overhead items like loose cables.
- Marking changes to floor height or level using bright caution tape on ramps.
- Keeping drawers and cabinets closed when not in use.
- Using handrails on all stairwells, platforms, and ramps.
- Cleaning up loose objects and debris.
- Inspecting floors, stairs, and platforms daily to check for hazards.
- Ensuring all employees are trained on hazard awareness and proper material handling.
Doing these things can help avoid slips, trips, and falls, keeping your employees and others around safe.
GMG EnviroSafe’s Fall Prevention Services
Fortunately, you do not have to do this alone. GMG EnviroSafe offers a comprehensive fall protection program and trains your employees on preventing falls.
GMG will help you with written fall protection plans and hazard assessments, teaching your employees how to use safety equipment properly and spot dangers. With our expertise in OSHA and safety regulations, GMG will provide the most effective fall protection plan that fits your business and specific needs. And with up-to-date federal, state, and local regulations and standards, you can count on us as your personal compliance department to help navigate best practices for fall prevention and to provide a safe workplace.
Falls remain one of the greatest threats to workplace safety, especially with employees working in elevated and high areas. However, with the proper safety measures in place, including training, fall protection systems, and procedures, your business can effectively reduce its risk of preventing accidents and fatal falls.
With GMG as your compliance department, we will provide you with all your fall prevention needs, guidance, and custom-tailored solutions to make your worksites as safe as possible.
Contact our team today to get started on your effective fall protection plan for your business!