Working From Heights
Safety Alert: Working From Heights
Safety Alert No: 40
Working from Heights is a requirement for you and something that you do confidently but please ensure that your CONFIDENCEdoes not slip into COMPLACENCY.
Please don’t think the fall couldn't happen to you – we can assure you it can.
We understand that working from heights is an integral part of your job and that it is a risk that can never be eliminated from the role of an Electrician.
However, it is a risk that can be effectively managed and there are laws and regulations in place that must be followed to ensure your safety.
HOW CAN YOU ENSURE YOUR SAFETY?
THE LAW SAYS
Regulation 3.55 states that if a person is at risk of falling 2 meters or more from an edge from
a) a scaffold, fixed stair, landing or suspended slab at the workplace or
b) formwork or falsework at a workplace
Edge protection must be provided.
Also, if there is a risk of a 3 meter fall in situations other than a) and b) above then edge protection and/ or a fall injury prevention system must be in place and utilised.
If you are working on a roof, e.g. a solar installation and any part of the work you are doing is above 3 meters from the ground, edge protection and/or a harness must be in use.
If you are accessing a roof to enter the roof space or chase cable etc. you can do so using a ladder but the ladder safety rules must always be applied.
Following the regulations is only part of what is required to keep you safe.
Your RAC process is the thing that will ensure that you combine the above with your own confirmation that there are no additional hazards present that you don’t know about.
So when working at heights think about;
• The materials that make up the structure
• The weather conditions
• Condition of your footwear
• Time allowance for the task (don’t rush)
• Tools required for the task – Reduce the need to constantly go up and down the ladder
• The others working in the vicinity
There are many other things that you could add to this list – The point is for you to take a few minutes to identify and assess the risks and the situation.