Occupations that involve employees using scaffolds, such as construction workers and painters, must be taken seriously. Any slight mishap on a scaffold could lead to serious injury for an employee, so if your business often uses scaffolds it’s important to maintain a high level of safety at all times. While Massachusetts workers compensation may help cover scaffold related injuries, you’re better off avoiding them all together.
According to OSHA, an estimated 65% of construction workers use scaffolds to perform jobs. There are many hazards involved with using scaffolds, such as falls, falling objects and electrocution. Preventing scaffold injuries can be done easily by following these steps:
1. Preventing falls:
• Guardrails: Guardrails are normally installed on scaffolds along the open sides and the ends. The rails should be somewhere between 38 to 45 inches tall and mid rails should be included halfway between the scaffold and the top rail.
• Personal Fall Arrest Systems (PFAs): A personal fall arrest system can include an anchorage, lifeline or a body harness.
2. Falling object protection:
• Wear hardhats: A hardhat will help prevent serious head injuries from occurring if a tool or other object falls in the direction of the scaffold.
• Barricade area below scaffold: This way, employees or others will not venture beneath the scaffold and expose themselves to objects falling from it.
• Canopies and Nets: By building a canopy or net beneath the scaffold, it may catch any falling objects.
3. Overhead power lines:
• Awareness: If your company has a job that is near power lines, make sure you’re staying far enough away from them so there is no chance an employee will come in contact with them.
At Wolpert Insurance & Risk Management we want companies who utilize scaffolds to have the necessary safety information to avoid employee injuries and workers compensation in Massachusetts. For more information, please contact us today.