Working At Height Still A Major Cause Of Injury

Falling from height is the most common cause of death in
the workplace and counts for almost a third of workplace injuries
in the UK, according to the Health and Safety Executive
(HSE).

New figures released by the HSE
for the past year indicate that a staggering 29% of all injuries to
employees in year 2013/2014 were caused by falls from
height.

Dangerous Fields

Falls in the fields of agriculture, tree surgery and
forestry were reported as the most common – however, these fields
were closely followed by the construction industry, where there is
constant use of scaffolding and ladders. Specifically, falls from
ladders are often cited as a frequent cause of workplace related
injury.

Employer’s Responsibilities

These stark statistics highlight how employers must take
care to ensure that the legislation surrounding work at height is
closely adhered to – to protect both employees and the general
public. Forward planning can reduce the length of time needed to
work at height and precautions such as the proper safety equipment
should always be deployed – hard hats and tough gloves should be
worn, and if necessary a safety harness. If a ladder is to be used
then the
HSE best practice guide should be
consulted; the ladder should be positioned at the correct angle,
which is 1 unit out for every 4 units upwards. No one working at
height should ever be encouraged or allowed to lean outwards too
far, as this can cause the ladder to topple over.