Working At Heights

Safety Alert: Working At Heights

Safety Alert No: 38

An EGT apprentice sustained serious injuries this week when he fell from 3.6 meters onto concrete whilst installing solar panels. WorkSafe will be investigating the incident. Initial investigations point to an absence of the use of fall arrest equipment and hazard assessment tools such as RAC Book, JRA and Safe Work Method Statements.

WHAT DOES THE LAW SAY?

Occupational Safety and Health Regulation 1996 – Regulation 3.55 states:

• “a fall injury prevention system is provided and in operation whenever there is a risk that a person could fall 3 or more metres from an edge at the workplace …”

• Edge protection to be provided and in operation wherever there is a risk of a person falling 2 or more meters from an edge.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

When on any roof, fall protection must be worn if the highest point of that roof is 3 meters or more and if there is any risk that you could fall off the edge from a height greater than 2 meters.

It also means that the contractor should provide edge protection if there is a risk of falling 2 meters or more from any edge of the structure.

Remember – the principle of duty of care requires an employee to use safety equipment that is provided. So, if the equipment is available please make sure you use it.

If it’s not available – ask for it. Contact your Field Officer if you have any concerns.

FIELD OFFICERS WILL BE CHECKING:

• RACs have been completed for all relevant tasks you are undertaking

• That you are wearing full protection as provided and as required

• Edge protection is in place as required by law.

Please, for your own safety, and the safety of those you work with, follow the above guidelines and use the equipment provided.

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