Five scaffolding safety 'don'ts'

Published:  01 October, 2014

Scaffold Towers takes a look at what to avoid when working at height, in order to reduce the risk of injury.

These days, scaffolding is a complex process governed by a whole plethora of health and safety rules, processes and recommendations. Simple common sense also tells us a lot about how to master the art of safe aluminium scaffold towers, and this blog explores a few tips on how to stay safe while working at height during work such as scaffolding.

1. Don

Risk-taking is a temptation when working, but even the slightest mishap can quickly become dangerous. Risks taken while 100ft above ground can have much more serious consequences than they would if taken on the ground. So, if you have a headache, are tired or are in a rush, slow down and consider the gravity of the risk you may be taking. When you have had a chance to weigh the pros and cons, you are much less likely to take an unnecessary risk.

2. Don

When working at height, there will usually be a few government-issued regulations or requirements available. Some of the main requirements for scaffolding include checking the safety and stability of the structure after bad weather and after any possible damage, in addition to undertaking a regular inspection of the entire structure.

The appropriate government guidance and advice should be identified and followed wherever possible. They are designed to help and protect construction workers. Construction workers should do a little bit of research before embarking on any scaffolding task. It may help to speak to a more experienced construction professional just to double-check you have covered everything.

3. Don

Are you in a hurry? Have things not gone to plan and you need to work faster to compensate? Most professionals find themselves in a similar situation at one time or another. While working at height however, rushing a job to compensate for delay can have dangerous or even deadly consequences. Rather than rushing through something you should be doing much more slowly, it may be a better idea to get someone else to help you, to ask for an extension or to just do what you safely can in the time available. Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone while working at height can have hidden consequences, so never lose sight of safety just to get a job completed on time or to compensate for delay. The old adage is true: ‘safety first’!

4. Don

During scaffolding work, there will be many things that require checking: the stability of the structure, records of previous checks and even the safety or condition of equipment. Checking something which will be fine nine times out of 10 can be seen as a mundane task, and the temptation to make assumptions creeps in as a result. Resist these temptations as they can lead to dangerous situations where workers and members of the public are endangered.

5. Don

Equipment used in scaffolding can quickly become disorganised and untidy. While this is inevitable at times, there are many things that can be done to reduce disorganisation, like ensuring that regular equipment itinerary checks are done. This potentially saves time and enables you to stay on top of the numbers and quality of equipment.

 

Scaffold Towers is a UK manufacturer of scaffold towers.